Global Leader Experience program success

Nursing, midwifery, paramedicine and education students recently participated in our first ever global leader experience in partnership with Common Purpose.

The four-day pilot saw students collaborate in cross-discipline teams to tackle the grand challenge: ‘How do we advance healthy ageing in our communities by strengthening inclusion and access?’

For many students, this challenge statement encouraged them to rethink their understanding of the concept of ageing – that it is more than just people who might be described as ‘elderly’, and that it is the life-long journey of maintaining functional and mental ability to ensure prolonged wellbeing.

It was fantastic to witness students enthusiastically tackle the grand challenge.

Engagement from organisations such as Orange Sky, St John of God Health, CatholicCare, McAuley House Ballarat, Patrician Brothers College (Blacktown), Caroline Chisholm College, local councils and other government organisations provided invaluable insight into the issues facing our communities in Blacktown and Ballarat.

Solutions provided by the students on the fourth day of the program were outstanding, with some even having grounds to be implemented in the future.

A list of the solutions resulting from the challenge include:

  • Integrating Ages Foundation: All Ages, All together – breaking down generational gaps
  • the Healthy Ageing Promotion in Adolescence program
  • volunteer-based service assisting the elderly community to learn how to access healthcare and social apps
  • connecting our older population to pre-existing mental health and social support services in Ballarat
  • Who let the dogs out – connecting the older community with rescue dogs to improve wellbeing
  • health literacy programs that aim to educate individuals of school age.

“The Global leader experience has enabled me to receive deeper but varied insights behind individual perspectives on societal issues,” reflected Blacktown campus-based Bachelor of Education (Primary) student Georgia Kypriotis, on her experience of the CPGLE. Georgia stated that the experience provided a great opportunity to gain skills in teamwork and leadership.

“Additionally, the program has empowered me to enhance my confidence levels, problem solving and communication skills, allowing me to thrive in future leadership roles. I strongly recommend the Global Leader Experience to all future ACU students to broaden their understanding of the necessary skills required of all leadership roles within our society,” Georgia said. 

We hope to be able to bring some of these solutions to fruition, working with the relevant students, staff and local community organisations, to ensure we commit to making an impact.

Thank you to the lead project staff from the Office of the Provost who worked tirelessly to ensure the program ran smoothly and for contributing to the development of a grand challenge that would allow our students to develop their leadership skills and influence the world in which they live.

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