New executive director, Atlantic fellows for social equity.

Professor Elizabeth (Liz) McKinley ONZM is a New Zealand academic and educator, and a Māori of Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa and Ngāi Tahu descent. Liz is Professor of Indigenous Education at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education (MGSE) at the University of Melbourne.In this role, Liz has shaped the development of Indigenous education programs in the Master of Teaching, including student immersion placements in Indigenous communities and remote schools and recently led the strategic development of MGSE’s Divisional Indigenous Development Plan 2019-2021.

Liz researches in the sociology of education, with a particular focus on Indigenous students and students from low socio-economic backgrounds across both secondary and tertiary sectors. She is the co-editor (with Linda Tuhiwai Smith, Waikato University) of the seminal work Handbook of Indigenous Education (2019, Springer). This is the first international research handbook with all chapters written entirely or led by First Nations authors (107 authors, 65 chapters) working across academia and Indigenous communities.

Prior to being appointed at MGSE, Liz was the Director in New Zealand of The Starpath Project for Tertiary Participation and Success, a program designed to transform the lives and educational pathways of young people typically under-represented in further and higher education. Liz continues to keep in contact with the University of Auckland through this project, continuing to write and work with Associate Professor Melinda Webber, who is a member of the AFSE Advisory Board and co-lead of the University of Auckland AFSE node.

Liz has been Interim Executive Director since February this year, taking over the reins from our inaugural Executive Director Jason Glanville. Since then, Liz has steered the AFSE team through the challenges of leadership transition, the COVID-19 pandemic, and into the recruitment phase of our new cohort of Fellows, beginning in 2021. Liz supported the team hosting the visit of the Atlantic Philanthropies, leading to the announcement of the second tranche of funding to support the 20-year AFSE program. More recently, Liz has navigated the approval processes of the University’s Academic Board to ratify the curriculum and other details of the Graduate Certificate in Social Change Leadership and Masters in Social Change Leadership that will be offered to incoming Fellows as part of their Fellowship year. These University qualifications will be delivered through the AFSE program, supported by the Melbourne Graduate School of Education and the broader academic community. This milestone achievement cements the superb work of the Curriculum Working Group led by Associate Professor Michelle Evans and Professor Julie McLeod.

We are privileged to have such a distinguished scholar to lead the Atlantic Fellows for Social Equity through this next phase of its young life.

James McCluskey AO FAA FAHMS                                Belinda Duarte

Deputy Vice Chancellor Research                                  Chair, Advisory Board Atlantic Fellows for Social Equity

The University of Melbourne

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