Impact @ Western Newsletter May 2020

Welcome to Impact@WESTERN.

In this online, quarterly newsletter we share stories of the impact of your generosity and the difference it is making at Western Sydney University. 

So much around us has changed. The speed of change has taken us all by surprise and Western has reacted swiftly. Over 50,000 students are learning online. Research projects across the University are finding solutions to the medical, environmental, sociological and technological challenges of our time. 

Western’s rapid response to COVID-19 saw us establish the Student Hardship Fund. The fund mobilises financial support for students who struggle to meet the daily costs of living. I offer sincere thanks to our generous donors and staff who have already contributed significantly in easing the financial burden of our students. There is much more to be done as our battered economy recovers slowly, and the jobs so vital to our students remain in short supply.

This year is particularly significant with the World Health Organisation declaring 2020 the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife. The story below features a remarkable Western Sydney University nursing graduate who overcame unbearable odds and is now living her dream on the frontline of our Western Sydney health workforce.

We proudly share the news that Western Sydney University was ranked 3rd in the world in the recent Times Higher Education Impact Rankings. The article below describes how the University is ranked in the Top 5 for six of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Through partnership and dialogue we are reframing the role of Western as the anchor institution of the region.  

Western Sydney University is focussed on the wellbeing of its community - our students, our staff, our partners and our supporters. I send sincere wishes to you and your family and look forward to sharing our next Impact@WESTERN newsletter with you.

Thank you for your goodwill, generosity and commitment to Western.  

With best wishes, 
Penny Tribe
Acting Executive Director, Office of Advancement

It takes a special person to become a nurse.

At the start of year, the World Health Organisation coined 2020 the year of the Nurse and Midwife in honour of the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale.

Nurses have long been our unsung heroes in society, since well before a global pandemic thrust them into the spotlight. For hundreds of years, nurses have worked tirelessly to improve the health and wellbeing of others.

One quality which we consistently observe in our student nurses, is the passion that drives them to pursue their career. Jacki, former scholarship recipient and a recent Western graduate is no exception.

Read Full article

“Nursing has always been something that I have been very passionate about”, she tells us. “I can't really picture myself doing any other field of occupation. It's something really special… being able to make even just the smallest of difference in my patients' lives.”

Jacki attributes the scholarship she received as having an integral role in her achievements at university, boosting confidence and giving her an extra reason to strive for success. Without the support of her scholarship, study would have been much more of a struggle and a life changing work placement in Nepal would have been impossible.

As Jacki and many students have reported, participating in a work placement field trip to a country such as Nepal provides invaluable experience and one that stays with students long after they graduate. Travelling to remote villages, far from home, where you must quickly learn to think on your feet while dealing with language barriers provides students a transformative educational experience that they take with them to their future careers.

“The most special part was when we went up into really remote villages in the hills and there's no hospital. They have to walk for miles and miles to just be able to access the most basic of health care. So being able to bring the facilities and the stuff to them and be able to treat them, provide them with medication, advice, education as well to the women especially was something that I found to privilege.

When we visited an elderly home… they didn’t speak a word of English. I could just see the gratitude. I had been able to provide safe and quality care, even though we weren’t able to verbally exchange words.”

Learning to provide health care in a culturally safe environment, as Jacki was required to do in Nepal, translates well into work in multicultural Western Sydney. Like so many Western Sydney University nursing graduates, Jacki will commence work in the Western Sydney health district, where she has lived her whole life.

Thanks to hard work and the benefit of a scholarship funded by the generosity of our donors, Jacki is giving back and truly making a difference.

Western secures its position amongst the world's top universities

Western Sydney University has secured its position amongst the world’s top universities, placing an impressive 3rd overall in the 2020 Times Higher Education (THE) University Impact Rankings.

The second annual THE University Impact Rankings assesses how the global higher education sector is working towards the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These rankings are based on research, outreach and stewardship and are the only ranking system in the world to assess higher education’s sustainability impact.