Support for students and staff of the University of South Australia who serve as Reservists will be strengthened following today’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Australian Defence Force.
Parliamentary Secretary for Defence Senator David Feeney said the University of South Australia was the first tertiary institution to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Defence.
“MOUs, such as the one signed today, clarify the relationship and responsibilities of both the university and Defence, so that they work cooperatively to support those members of the staff and student body who serve in the Australian Defence Force,” Senator Feeney said.
Signing the MOU was the Deputy Head Cadet, Reserve and Employer Support Division within the Department of Defence, Commodore Robert Morrison, and University of South Australia Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic, Professor Joanne Wright.
Commodore Morrison said student Reservists provided Defence with a valuable capability and often made themselves available for lengthy deployments.
“This MOU will ensure an easier release process when Reservists are called to serve. It will also assist them to better balance study or work with serving in the ADF. It’s important that Defence has good relationships with a variety of tertiary institutions that involve our Reservists, so I hope to see TAFEs, colleges and universities across Australia follow the University of South Australia’s lead,” Commodore Morrison said.
Professor Wright said the MOU represents a real appreciation of Reserves and the vital role they play in the community.
“Our university has a constitutional commitment to serving the community and it is a well established ethos within the university itself to volunteer and use our skills to benefit people in the wider world. At the same time we acknowledge that Reserves training gives our staff and students skills and knowledge that can be widely applied in their lives and in their workplaces,” she said.
The university is home to 34,000 students and more than 3000 staff, with many serving as Reservists.
Senator Feeney's Office: Jeffrey von Drehnen 0477 348 476
Cadet, Reserve and Employer Support Division: Deanna Nott 0438 013 548
UniSA Manager News and Media: Michèle Nardelli 0418 823 673