Sharna is a Gunditjmara woman with connections to Framlingham, South West Victoria.
"I graduated from a Bachelor of Nursing at Victoria University (VU) in 2018. While studying I had the opportunity to work as a nurse assistant on one of the wards at the Western Health Footscray Hospital as part of the Western Health Aboriginal Nurse Cadetship Program."
"VU was my first preference because my mum also studied at there, she studied Community Services/Mumgu-Dhal. She felt like a part of the VU Indigenous community and I felt I was always welcomed by everyone to be a part of it."
"VU was also recommended to me by my mum because it’s a lot more welcoming, student focused and flexible compared to other places. VU and Moondani Balluk – Indigenous Academic Unit are a culturally safe space and that’s important. Each student has different needs and VU takes that into account."
"VU and Moondani Balluk are grassroots and organic in the ways it operates. They are very involved in community and are a grassroots organisation, working closely with Footscray organisations, so you definitely feel you are part of community."
"I engaged with Moondani Balluk extensively throughout my time at VU. They were really supportive and assisted a lot with choosing my courses and how to navigate the university system."
"I enrolled into the Bachelor of Kyinandoo (Indigenous studies) to adjust to university life before I switched over to Nursing. For me, Kyinandoo acted as a bridging course and a foundation to build on and eased me into higher education and studying. I would not be here if it wasn’t for Moondani Balluk who supported me in the difficult transition into life at VU from high school."
"My teachers helped me, supported me and enabled me to understand self-development, self-practice and self-learning which helped me be the best student and person I can possibly be."
Picture courtesy of Western Health.