NAISDA Dance College, Australia’s national arts training organisation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and The University of Auckland’s Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries have signed a significant Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) fostering a new program of artistic and cultural collaboration and international academic cooperation.
The MOU recognises the strong foundation of cultural, academic and philosophical alignment between the two learning institutions.
It strengthens existing programs into a valuable long-term exchange of information, learning excellence and connectivity between students, trainers and facilities.
NAISDA Chair Sean Gordon and Chief Executive Officer Kim Walker travelled to Auckland in August to sign the MOU alongside Professor Diane Brand, Dean of the University’s Faculty of Creative Arts and Industries.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with the University of Auckland,” said Mr Gordon.
“This clear and exciting commitment allows our two organisations to transfer knowledge and build capacity, not just within our student cohorts, but for the benefit of our wider communities.
“It is clear recognition of the value of global cultural and creative exchange and practice,” he added.
The MOU includes a series of collaborative masterclasses, hands-on learning secondments for students and trainers and cooperative creative projects. It also presents a catalyst to leverage further opportunities in cultural and creative education and enhance international academic career pathways and networks for graduates.
A statement from Dance Studies Department at the University of Auckland said, “The Dance Studies Department at the University of Auckland are absolutely elated to be entering into this next stage of our relationship with NAISDA.
“In partnership we welcome the opportunity to develop culturally responsive, relevant and equitable Arts Education practices.
“For Australia and New Zealand and other Indigenous and non-Indigenous global networks, the reciprocity in this relationship highlights significant contributions for the creative and autonomous flourishing of our Indigenous communities.”
The initiative recognises the high regard of both organisations’ capabilities in creative training and sector development.
“We are excited to be developing unique projects together which equip our students, staff, alumni and organisations with new skills and experiences,” continued Mr Gordon.
“NAISDA looks forward to building an expanded framework of international and national cooperation as we pursue our vision for a new model of Indigenous creative learning for Australia and beyond,” he concluded.