Pasifika Australia is an access and equity outreach program at ANU supported by the University’s Student Equity office and the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific . Pasifika Australia was initiated in 2008 by staff and students in the Pacific studies program. Since then the program has grown significantly and consists of a wider community of ANU students and staff who are passionate about equity, and educational and identity issues facing Pasifika communities in Australia. The program uses Pasifika as an umbrella term that refers to all peoples from the Pacific region including Papua New Guinea in Melanesia, the Marshall Islands in Micronesia and Aotearoa/New Zealand in Polynesia.
Pasifika Australia aims to:
- encourage students of Pasifika heritage in ACT and NSW to aspire to higher education through Pacific based lectures and cultural workshops
- raise awareness about Pacific cultures and issues locally and nationally
- enhance educational outcomes for Pasifika communities
- pursue research questions related to the educational status of Pasifika communities in Australia.
Pasifika Australia supports the Pasifika Student Society, a student run social group aimed at supporting Pasifika students, Pacific international students and students interested in the Pacific at ANU.
In 2009 Pasifika Australia received the Outstanding Community Award from the NSW Council for Pacific Communities. In 2011 the program won a Vice Chancellor's Staff Excellence Award for Community Outreach.
Pasifika Australia is governed by the Pasifika Australia Steering Committee chaired by Professor Andrew Walker, Deputy Dean and Association Dean (Education) in the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific.