The University of New South Wales (UNSW) one of Australia’s leading research and educational institute celebrated 150 years of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi this October 2 with much fanfare. The university organised a talk by Professor Kama Maclean, Fellow, National Library of Australia on Mahatma Gandhi and his Australian connection. Another event was a panel discussion about Gandhi and his ideas on education. UNSW student body organised events where they conducted prayers and sang hymns associated with Gandhi besides writing an essay competition held in collaboration with the Indian Consulate in Sydney. The occasion also saw the Indian Consul General, Manish Gupta gifting books on Gandhi to the UNSW library.
UNSW holds a special memorial ceremony on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti (October 2 besides organising its annual Gandhi oration on Martyrs Day (January 30) each year. Launched in 2011, the Gandhi oration is delivered by a person whose life work exemplifies the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi.
The University has a bust of Mahatma Gandhi installed on its Library Lawns since September 1, 2010. The bronze sculpture by Ram Sutar was gifted by the then Indian Consul General Amit Dasgupta along with a collection of books on and by Gandhi to the University in recognition of the collaboration between India and UNSW in transforming lives through higher education. The University placed the bust in the heart of the campus as a mark of its commitment to sustaining and strengthening its partnership with India. The sculpture has been the first bust of Gandhi to be installed in a university campus in the state of New South Wales.
“The celebration of the Gandhi Jayanti reflects not only UNSW’s commitment to cultural diversity but to the values and the ideals that Mahatma Gandhi epitomizes even to this day. Gandhiji’s talisman reflects the ideals that any great university would aspire towards while transforming lives and changing the external environment for the betterment of the marginalized and the impoverished. UNSW embraces such responsibility because it is committed to creating change makers,” says Amit Dasgupta who now represents the University as its inaugural India Country Director UNSW.
The University caters to 1200 Indian students for its under-grad and post-graduate degrees and has been conducting multi-city outreach events in India since the past few years to attract students looking to pursue their higher education in Australia. UNSW has also instituted the ‘Future of Change scholarship programme’ for Indian students who are keen to pursue their educational aspirations at UNSW. The scholarship features a full tuition fee waiver for the duration of a student’s program, while other scholarships valued at $10,000 per year are also available.International, News