Recognition for inclusion and opportunity

ACU has been shortlisted as a finalist for the Opportunity and Inclusion category in the 2021 Australian Financial Review Higher Education Awards.

The shortlisting recognises ACU’s work in empowering current and former members of the Australian Defence Force to access higher education and realise their academic goals through its Student Veteran Services.

Since 2019, ACU’s Student Veteran Services – consisting of our Veterans Entry Program, Veterans Transition Program and Student Veteran Support Program – have supported close to 200 veterans to transition out of the defence force to civilian life through tertiary study.

Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Zlatko Skrbis said he was pleased that the initiative had been so well received.

“I am very proud ACU has been recognised by our industry peers and to be included in such an impressive group of nominees increasing opportunity and inclusion through higher education.

“At ACU, we see ourselves as being at the centre of a wonderful experiment to create a welcoming platform for student veterans across the higher education landscape.
“Our ambition is to create a national network of engagement, to ensure that those who’ve served our country can make the leap into tertiary education, and can continue to have a positive impact on the wider community.”

Veterans enter ACU through the Veterans Entry Program (VEP), a direct entry pathway to increase accessibility to higher education. Since the program began, student veteran enrolments have grown remarkably, with approximately 490 per cent increase from 2019 to 2021.

This is a testament to the lifechanging benefits of education. It provides veterans with stronger employment outcomes, financial security and a faster transition to civilian life. ACU’s Student Veteran Services aim to achieve this by supporting veterans from the very beginning of their enrolment.

The recognition of prior learning provides increase accessibility to higher education, and student veterans are empowered to transition smoothly to university and to experience continued success throughout their time at ACU. Student veterans have gone on to excel in various study area disciplines including health sciences, business and law and education.

By researching the unique issues and challenges our veterans experience, ACU aims to shape other initiatives to further progress opportunities and success for student veterans now and into the future. 

Visit here for more information about Student Veteran Services at ACU.

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