Pathways and programs grounded in culture, leading to academic and leadership success for
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

Building on the success of Macquarie University’s first Rising Stars Leadership camp in 2016, Walanga Muru continued to build the momentum for success in 2017. A pilot Critical Thinking Unit stream and a Rising Stars Leadership camp were held in session 1 and 2 respectively.

Rising Stars Leadership Camp 2017

The Rising Stars Camp, run in conjunction with Mirri Mirri (an external Aboriginal owned company specialising in leadership and cultural competency), is a three-day camp targeted at Aboriginal students in Years 10 and 11, with demonstrated capacity in academic, leadership or cultural skills. The camp takes place on the Macquarie University campus and students engage with a range of different workshops and activities throughout the three days focusing on leadership, culture and self-determination.  Students experienced cultural activities, science experiments with Macquarie University’s NISEP team, a First Robotics presentation and programs for leadership skill building. Applications opened in June 2017 and the response was overwhelming with fifty-seven students applying and Walanga Muru placing 16 students on a wait list for future camps. Forty-one students, from as far as Lightning Ridge in Northern NSW, were able to attend the camp. Applications for 2018 will be open from January 2018 with information and links on the Walanga Muru website.

Critical Thinking pilot 2017

Walanga Muru partnered with the Pathways and Partnerships team and the Department of Philosophy to deliver the Critical Thinking unit in 2017. During the 2016 Rising Stars Leadership camp, held at Macquarie University (and through the Ngamuru secondary program) several students expressed interest in the existing Critical Thinking Unit (formerly, Gifted and Talented unit). Ten Year 11 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students were enrolled. Five students completed, with one student receiving a distinction resulting in an offer to study at Macquarie University in 2019. Four other students achieved pass awards. Walanga Muru has seven applications for enrolment into the Critical Thinking Unit for 2018. Completion of the Critical Thinking Unit, places Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students into a competitive position for entry into Macquarie University.

Applications are still open until February 2018.

Pathways and Partnerships in 2018

If you or your faculty would like to partner with Walanga Muru in 2018, we have many campus and outreach activities taking place. Please contact if you would like more information.

Posted by Jennifer Gili


  1. Todd Trenerry 18 May, 2018 at 12:23 pm

    WTG Walanga Muru … love your work !!


    1. Jennifer Gili 18 May, 2018 at 1:08 pm

      Thanks Todd Trenerry. The next camp is already receiving a large number of applications and we have increased the capacity again!

      Rising Stars 2019 will be held in September 19 – 21.


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