SAE stands up to celebrate Indigenous culture’s creative impact

This year’s NAIDOC Week was an opportunity to Stand Up! Show Up! and celebrate the valuable contribution Indigenous culture makes to the creative industries.
SAE Indigenous celebrations

SAE General Manager, Dr Luke McMillan, acknowledged the importance of honouring the national event.

“This NAIDOC Week, the SAE community engaged in a range of initiatives across our campuses to learn more about the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples,” Dr McMillan said.

“Indigenous culture is a valuable part of the fabric of the creative industries, that’s why it’s vital we reflect and celebrate it.

“SAE will continue to declare its support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart and for structural and constitutional reforms to improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples.”


During the week long observance, the Brisbane campus hosted an Indigenous Film Fest, that included screenings of Sweet Country, Satellite Boy, In My Blood It Runs, Charlie’s Country, and Ten Canoes.

To acknowledge the Turrbul People as the traditional custodians of the land on which the Brisbane campus stands, Indigenous artwork was projected onto the campus at night.

Byron Bay

Delta Kay performed a smoking ceremony at the Byron Bay campus at the start of the week acknowledging the Arakwal people of the Bundjalung Nation as the traditional custodians of the land. Cavanbah is the Aboriginal name for Byron Bay, and respect was paid to the Arakwal elders past, present, and emerging.

Music students, Benji Slabb and Michael Weir put on an open mic performance to celebrate their heritage and honour Indigenous culture.

Later in the week, Delta Kay gave a tour of Cape Byron to staff. The group listened to Delta’s stories of community, culture, and country. They also had the privilege to learn more about bush tucker – its applications, identification, and properties.


Students in Melbourne got the opportunity to experience Indigenous films Samson and Delilah, and Charlie’s Country. Screenings of the films were shown to highlight and provide conversations around the challenges and struggles that Aboriginal communities have faced for generations.


Throughout the week, students and staff at the Perth campus were given the chance to attend a range of insightful events which celebrated Indigenous culture, and acknowledged the traditional Whadjuk women who gave birth on the land the campus is built on.

This included an Indigenous lunch of Kangaroo stew and Damper, and an art workshop with acclaimed Nyoongar artist, Charlie Colbung. In the session, students got the chance to create their own artwork, learn about Nyoongar culture, and the importance of spirituality through art.

In addition, a Didgeridoo workshop by Didgeridoo Breath was held to teach students on the history of the instrument and how to use it.



To honour Indigenous music, Sydney played a range of songs by First Nations artists in its student lounge and at the front desk of the campus. The playlist from the week is here for you to enjoy…

In addition, students and staff got involved in the NAIDOC poster colouring, enjoyed food made by Indigenously owned Kali Co Catering, and the screening of the 1971 survival film, Walkabout.

Two students walk outside the front of SAE campus in Sydney.

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