There has been discomforting commentary over the past few days related to international students from China. I reaffirm The University of Western Australia’s commitment to the deeply held values that underpin all we do. We uphold and celebrate diversity, fairness and inclusivity; and we stand resolute in our rejection of racial prejudice and intolerance in any form – always.
Our University remains safe, welcoming and inclusive. We respect and value our international students from countries around the world for the ways they enrich our culture through their diverse perspectives and experiences. We have much to learn from each other and look forward to welcoming them all back to campus, as soon as the Federal Government’s health advice indicates that we can do so.
Throughout the unavoidable disruptions of this past semester we have maintained close contact with our students – both domestic and international, in WA and abroad – to provide support, advice and friendship.
We moved very quickly to help our students in response to the developing pandemic. This meant we had to modify everything to go online: lectures, course work, exams and key services. Additional support and flexibility continues to be provided to ensure continuity of their studies. I am delighted that as we reach the end of Semester 1, so many of our students have managed to deal with the severe disruption to their studies caused by COVID-19, demonstrating resilience and belief in their own education. They are exactly the people we need in leadership in the coming decades to take us out of this pandemic to a new future. I congratulate them all.
Regular and personalised communication and engagement have kept our students connected to the broader University community and focused on progressing with their studies, as they made the necessary transition to online learning and alternate modes of assessment. We are extremely proud of the resilience and flexibility they have demonstrated in successfully continuing their study pathways.
As we transition back to full campus operations, we are being guided by the Federal Government’s health and travel advice, to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of all our students, staff and the community.
Professor Jane den Hollander AO, Vice-Chancellor of The University of Western Australia