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UC appoints new dean for Indigenous leadership and strategy

Claudia Doman

10 November 2015: Highly respected Aboriginal researcher and tertiary education senior manager, Professor Peter Radoll, has been appointed Dean of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership and Strategy at the University of Canberra, the most senior appointment of its type in the ACT.

Professor Radoll, who is a descendant of the Anaiwan people of NSW and has extensive experience in senior management in Indigenous higher education, will commence in this new role on 18 January 2016. 

"This is a wonderful opportunity to consolidate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education, research, employment and student engagement under one umbrella within the University," Professor Radoll, Australia's leading Aboriginal researcher in information and communication technologies, said.

"The University of Canberra is taking a giant leap with this appointment; it sends a strong message to the Indigenous community to have an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander person to lead this strategy."

Professor Radoll, who was a motor mechanic for 11 years before taking up tertiary study, has Bachelor and Master degrees in Information Technology from the University of Canberra. He also holds a PhD from the Australian National University (ANU) which focused on the factors affecting the adoption of information and communication technologies in remote and urban Australian Indigenous households. 

"Being named Dean of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership and Strategy at UC is not only surreal but also a great honour," Professor Radoll said. "I'm very lucky to come back to an institution that has done so much for me. It feels like coming home."

This new senior management position will directly oversee Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander education, research, the Ngunnawal Centre and student engagement at the University of Canberra.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Stephen Parker AO said it was in line with the University's Strategic Plan to bring together all the current Indigenous University initiatives under the same leadership.

"This appointment marks an important change in our approach to improving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander strategy and outcomes at the University of Canberra," Professor Parker said.

"The University is committed to enhancing the participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in higher education, and to this end I look forward to Peter's leadership to align our policies, strategic and operational planning and our activities with the goal of making UC a welcoming and culturally safe place for Indigenous students and staff."

Professor Radoll is currently Dean of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education and Research and the Director of Academic and Research at the Wollotuka Institute at the University of Newcastle, as well as Professor of Information Systems.

He is also an Adjunct Professor in Information Systems at the University of Canberra and a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre of Aboriginal Economic Policy Research in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, at ANU. 

Professor Radoll had an acting role as director of the Ngunnawal Indigenous Higher Education Centre at the University of Canberra for periods in 2012 and 2013. From 2007 to 2012, he was responsible for managing the operations of the ANU's Tjabal Indigenous Higher Education Centre.He's been a member of the Canberra Institute of Technology Council, an Indigenous community representative on the ACT Community Information Technology Advisory Group and has also held other memberships with Universities Australia's Indigenous and Deputy Vice-Chancellor International Committees.