Deakin thinkers work on youth blueprint

Victorian Parliament and Deakin University sign new partnership agreementThe Victorian Parliament has launched into a more youthful future this week with the help of students from Deakin University.

In a parliamentary first, a cross-disciplinary team of Deakin University students is working on a blueprint for parliament’s future engagement with youth through digital channels.

President of the Legislative Council Bruce Atkinson and Speaker of the Legislative Assembly Colin Brooks have signed a partnership agreement with Deakin University’s Pro Vice-Chancellor of Graduate Employment, Professor Dineli Mather to formally establish the youth engagement initiative.

Five students from a range of disciplines will research and develop a way forward for the Victorian Parliament, to enhance its connection with young Victorians via digital platforms, including social media.

The students - Ana Erkalovic (International Studies), Matt Kloszynski (Communication and Media), Abhilash Margasahayam (Business Administration), Ari Moore (Arts) and Sid Sharma (Accounting and International Finance) – attended the partnership signing ceremony at Parliament House today, along with Freelancing Hub Operations Manager Emma Simpfendorfer and Coordinator Kitty Fan.

Victorian Parliament and Deakin University sign new partnership agreement

The initiative taps into the expertise of Deakin University’s Freelancing Hub, which enables students to work on real business needs for a range of organisations. The Freelancing Hub program helps organisations find solutions to issues they are confronting while enhancing student skills in their preparation for the workforce.

The youth engagement project for parliament follows a series of workshops the Victorian Parliament conducted with youth across Victoria last year, in association with the Foundation for Young Australians.

At the workshops, young Victorians called for more and better opportunities to engage with parliament, particularly via digital platforms, with content produced for youth by youth.

Responding to that challenge, the partnership with Deakin University enables students to map out ways in which the Victorian Parliament can engage with youth in the spaces and places they frequent in the online world.


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