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Triplet sisters blaze a trail in first Indigenous enabling graduations

Media release

Trailblazing Indigenous female triplets are one step closer to achieving their dreams of becoming certified physiotherapists after graduating in the first cohort of a new enabling course at Curtin University.

Lauren, Roberta and Jacinta Ramirez-Smith, aged 18, are among 13 graduates who have successfully completed the first Indigenous Pre-Medicine and Health Sciences Enabling Course at Curtin University.

The course, run through the Centre for Aboriginal Studies in collaboration with the Faculty of Health Sciences and the Curtin Medical School, opens another door to tertiary education by providing a culturally appropriate pathway that is suitable for students who haven’t completed ATAR studies.

Professor Marion Kickett, Director of the Centre for Aboriginal Studies at Curtin University, said she was delighted to celebrate the first cohort of graduates from the enabling course.

“This is our first cohort of graduates from the Indigenous Pre-Medicine and Health Sciences Enabling Course and we are thrilled to celebrate this significant achievement for Indigenous education at Curtin,” Professor Kickett said.

“The graduates will be starting their undergraduate degrees next month in a range of health courses at Curtin including Nursing, Social Work, Medicine, Physiotherapy and Health, Safety and Environment.

“We are extremely proud of all the graduates and wish them all the best in their studies here at Curtin as well as their future careers as health professionals.”

Curtin University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic Professor Jill Downie said the first cohort of 13 graduates who have been accepted into Medicine, Nursing, Physiotherapy, Social Work and Health, Safety and Environment demonstrates the need for pre-pathway options for Indigenous students.

“The success of the enabling course is a strong example of why it is essential to provide alternative learning options for Indigenous students in Australia,” Professor Downie said.

“These graduates are among the first set of students from Curtin who will help contribute to the nationwide initiative to provide better health services to Indigenous people by increasing the number of Indigenous doctors and health professionals across the country.”

The Indigenous Pre-Medicine and Health Sciences Enabling Course, launched in March 2017, is available to people of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent and offers alternative pathways into undergraduate health courses and the Curtin Medical School.

For further information about the Indigenous Pre-Medicine and Health Sciences Enabling Course, visit the Centre for Aboriginal Studies website.