Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall with NSW International Student Award finalist UNE student Dunya Alruhaimi.
MEMBER for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall has today met with and congratulated University of New England (UNE) Iraqi student Dunya Alruhaimi on being named a finalist in the 2015 NSW International Student Awards.
Mr Marshall said the International Student Awards, a State Government initiative, celebrated outstanding contributions made by international students to communities in NSW.
“I congratulate Dunya on being selected as a finalist – along with all the hard-working international students, she has made an enormous contribution to UNE’s rich cultural fabric,” Mr Marshall said.
“It is no doubt intimidating to start at a new institution, in a new country, where life as you know it is very different and Dunya is an outstanding example of a leader whose actions enhance multiculturalism and encourage unity within communities.
“She manages to balances her family and student life with a vast range of community services.”
Mr Marshall said Ms Alruhaimi’s day-to-day commitments, to name a few, included helping new Iraqi students feel settled at UNE, acting as an interpreter for Arabic women at various community service centres, encouraging student participation in community events and representing the Arabic community at meetings pertinent to their wellbeing.
“Dunya’s involvement at events and meetings varies from participant, advisor, advocate, coordinator and interpreter – whatever the need,” he said. “Initiatives such as the International Woman’s Program arose from her desire to provide support and integration opportunities for Arabic speaking women in the Armidale district.”
Mr Marshall said the group was aimed at international students in partnership with UNE and ‘One of a Kind Community Support, a local charitable organisation.
“By generating opportunities for social contact, entertainment and learning, Dunya has shown her empathy for those experiencing isolation and homesickness and her genuine commitment to improve the quality of these people’s lives,” he said.
International Student Awards are presented in six categories and the winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Sydney Opera House on Tuesday, 13 October.
For more information about the awards, visit www.nsw.gov.au/internationalstudentawards