Kicking Goals Together: Representing a Culture of Engagement at ACU
Prof Sandra Jones, Pro Vice Chancellor Engagement, ACU
Dr Matthew Pink, Research Fellow, ACU Engagement, ACU
At the Australian Catholic University, we see community engagement not as a discrete program or entity, but as part of our university DNA – it is in how we teach, how our students learn, what we research, and the ways we interact with the world around us. We strive to provide opportunities for staff and students from all disciplines and across all campuses to work with community in ways that are respectful and mutually beneficial.
Kicking Goals Together (KGT) is a Sport for Development program at ACU’s Brisbane campus. Founded in 2016, KGT is a 5-a-side Football competition involving youth from refugee and migrant backgrounds. The competition also includes teams from ACU staff and domestic and international student cohorts, creating a space for fun and friendly interactions between people from diverse backgrounds.
In partnership with Multicultural Development Australia (MDA) and with support from the Brisbane City Council, we also work with youth in the Skill Up program after each round of the competition. Skill Up has a focus on developing ‘21st century skills’ such as networking, problem solving, and understanding the culture of Australian workplaces. Skill Up culminates with each participant attending a mock interview with someone from a field of work they aspire to, and this coincides with the football competition finale event. So far there have been 32 graduates from the Skill Up program and many have gone on to secure casual employment or begin their tertiary studies with confidence.
For more information about KGT: @KickingGoalsTogether
For more information about community engagement at ACU: http://www.acu.edu.au/about_acu/our_university/acu_engagement