Solid Pathways Teacher Mr Jeff Cassidy, Asher Salam, Rikiana Salam, Chloe Salam, Diana Salam
Solid Pathways Teacher Mr Jeff Cassidy, Asher Salam, Rikiana Salam, Chloe Salam, Diana Salam
24 November 2014

More than 300 high-achieving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander school students are closer to pursuing careers in areas including law, veterinary science and health sciences, thanks to a program launched at The University of Queensland this year.

Solid Pathways – a program that supports Queensland’s high-achieving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders students through school and into careers – will hold an experience day at UQ for its student participants on Wednesday 3 December.

Students will meet their online peer group and teachers, and explore career opportunities a university education could open to them.

UQ Program Director Associate Professor Deborah Brown from the School of History, Philosophy, Religion and Classics said feedback on the Queensland Government-funded program had been overwhelmingly positive.

“Solid Pathways is unique because it focuses on academic excellence and higher-order thinking skills and involves students at such an early age,” Professor Brown said.

“Schools have been extremely positive about academic and attitudinal improvements in students as a result of participating in the program.”

The focus of the program is small-group critical-thinking classes taught online by highly-trained Education Queensland teachers, including UQ’s Peter Ellerton.

One of the students completed UQ’s ‘Effective Thinking and Writing’ summer course and has discovered a passion and talent for writing. The Indigenous students, who scored in the top 10 per cent on NAPLAN tests in reading and numeracy, come from 187 Queensland schools.

The number of students in the program is expected to increase in 2015 as it expands to the Darling Downs West, and the South East and North East Coast regions of Queensland.

“Solid Pathways is the only Indigenous pathway program to cross primary, secondary and tertiary sectors of education and the only one that involves such a high-level of academic skill development,” Professor Brown said. 

The program comprises the coordinated efforts of government, schools, UQ, teachers, academics, parents, Elders, and community groups.

It targets top-performing Indigenous students, as well as students in foster care or living independently, to ensure they are supported throughout their schooling.

Senior students can elect to undertake UQ courses for future credit and participate in a booster program designed to enhance performance on the Queensland Core Skills test.

Media: Deborah Brown 07 3365 2804; Peter Ellerton 07 3365 3321

To attend the next Solid Pathways Experience Day at UQ’s St Lucia campus on December 3, please contact Cate Carter at