supplied by University of Queensland
Associate Professor Sandra Phillips ... a widely recognised leader in the Indigenous literary sector. Image: supplied
Indigenous educator drawn to UQ’s ‘dynamic energy’
The University of Queensland welcomes a new Associate Dean (Indigenous Engagement) next month – a first for the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Associate Professor Sandra Phillips, a member of the Wakka Wakka and Gooreng Gooreng nations of Queensland, will lead reconciliation actions – in HASS and UQ-wide – across teaching, research and engagement.
Pro Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement) Professor Bronwyn Fredericks said she was delighted about Dr Phillips’ appointment.
“I can’t wait to welcome Sandra and to work with her on progressing the Indigenous engagement agenda at UQ and beyond,” Professor Fredericks said.
Dr Phillips said she looked forward to working towards boosting Indigenous involvement in HASS courses and activities.
“The time is right for the Faculty to maximise its disciplinary strengths in working effectively with Indigenous partners to bring positive changes to lives well beyond the campus,” Dr Phillips said.
“UQ’s Indigenous agenda has a dynamic energy and I relish being part of that, under Bronwyn’s leadership.”
HASS Executive Dean Professor Heather Zwicker said many people over many years had built UQ’s solid foundations in Indigenous reconciliation.
She acknowledged the expert work of Kerry Kilner, who has been the HASS Faculty’s Reconciliation Action Coordinator since May.
“The arts, humanities and social sciences have a special role in moving toward reconciliation because our disciplines are the locus for thinking carefully, critically and creatively about history, literature, representation, equity, justice, narrative, identity, belonging, education and pluralism,” Professor Zwicker said.
“I am honoured to work alongside Associate Dean Sandra Phillips to achieve our objectives.”
Dr Phillips joins UQ from the Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research at the University of Technology Sydney, where she coordinated university-wide recruitment and support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Higher Degree by Research students.
UQ awarded Dr Phillips her Bachelor of Arts (Sociology and Government) in 1988 and her PhD from QUT in 2012 was awarded the Creative Industries Dean’s Commendation Doctoral Thesis Award.
She had a successful career in Australian publishing and continues to be a widely recognised and valued leader in the Indigenous literary sector.
Awards she has received include the Queensland Writers Centre Johnno Award for services to writing in Queensland and the inaugural Oodgeroo Noonuccal Research Scholarship (Postgraduate).
Dr Phillips has written and edited book chapters and journals on Indigenous Knowledges and creativity, and worked in federal government and statutory bodies, including the Department of Communications and the Arts and Aboriginal Hostels Limited.
She lectured in Creative Writing and Literary Studies at QUT from 2013 to 2017, and at the University of the Sunshine Coast in 2013, where she initiated, developed, and delivered a 13-week course titled Reading Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Writing.
Dr Phillips retains her board positions with the National Institute of Dramatic Art, the Library Board of Queensland and the not-for-profit group Of One Mind.
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