29 March 2023

University centre celebrates decade of first-class student support

| Gail Eastaway
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two young women

Cooma-based CUC education coordinator Han Worsley (left) and manager Nadine Holland.

Cooma’s Country Universities Centre (CUC) is celebrating its 10th anniversary, marking a decade of supporting the region’s students.

Centre manager Nadine Holland said: “From humble beginnings as a Snowy Hydro Community Initiative, Cooma Universities Centre served as a blueprint for a now-national, not-for-profit network of Country Universities Centres (CUCs). The network has grown to 18 CUCs that service 23 regional, rural and remote locations such as Cape York in Far North Queensland, the Bass Coast on the southern coast of Victoria, and Broken Hill in NSW’s west.

“In its 10 years, CUC Snowy Monaro has supported 530 students and the network of centres has supported a massive 4490 students.”

As a free local service, CUC Snowy Monaro has attracted students from 108 education and training providers and seen them graduate from courses ranging from nursing and archaeology to agriculture and engineering.

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“Adding to the excitement of the expanding centre services and the greater CUC network, CUC Snowy Monaro is looking forward to celebrating its 10-year birthday with the broader community throughout the year.” Ms Holland said.

“CUC acknowledges that rural and regional participation in tertiary education benefits the whole of the local community with lots of events and activities.”

In 2023, CUC Snowy Monaro will continue to provide a range of quality, free services to local and visiting students. Registration, services and facilities are free, and students can access the amenities from 5 am to 2 am, 365 days a year.

This year, CUC has also welcomed a new staff member, Han Worsley, as education coordinator. Han comes with a strong community service and education background and is especially dedicated to rural and remote education. Her passion will be on display as staff immerse themselves in our community at the coming Dalgety, Cooma and Bombala shows. They hope people will stop by and have a chat at the CUC Snowy Monaro tent.

Han will also coordinate the first University of Wollongong (UOW) Future Me Program. CUC Snowy Monaro will be hosting UOW at the main Cooma centre as well as in Jindabyne. The program is open to all year 12 students across the region and will run between May and August on Tuesday afternoons.

The program aims to help students improve HSC study skills, prepare for important decisions, and explore post-high school opportunities. Year 12 students who register and complete the program will:

  • Receive an early admission guaranteed offer at either UOW or UOW College (dependent upon academic performance)
  • Experience a taste of university life as a UOW-enrolled student
  • Connect with student mentors currently studying at UOW.

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Because Han is such a powerhouse, she will help to continue providing registered students with one-on-one academic skills advice and wraparound support from the Bombala Street Centre.

Duncan Goozeff, a 2023 Bachelor of Nursing (University of Canberra) graduate, said: “As a student at the CUC, I really valued the in-person academic support that they provide. It is great to just bounce ideas off someone and it is also great to really dig down and work through a complicated study issue.”

Continuing with the focus on local school students, CUC is inviting students in years 9 to 12 at any Snowy Monaro school to access the centre as part of the Homework Club.

The club provides students with a safe and quiet dedicated space to study, complete assessments and unwind after school. The students will have access to free Wi-Fi, general study support, and a safe space for post-school planning. The supervised program will run on Mondays and Wednesdays from 3 pm to 5:30 pm at the Cooma centre. Parents and students should check for any changes on CUC’s social media sites each week.

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