Ines Astyne, a Jawa from Tatooine, has recently graduated from the Corellia University School of Starship Engineering with full honors. While this may not initially seem surprising, this is the first time any Jawa has graduated from a university not located in the Outer Rim. Additionally, the number of Jawa university graduates galaxywide is incredibly small, with some statistics indicating that this number may be under a hundred. As such, Ines's story of success has been praised throughout Jawa communities. His story is one of success despite all odds, and will be examined here.
Ines at his graduation
Ines was born to the Astyne tribe in "west" Tatooine. As with most Jawas, higher education was never really an option for him, with most Jawa education being learned on the job and then instantly applied. However, Ines became fascinated with things that he could not easily learn at home, often getting in trouble for taking apart droids which had nothing wrong with them in order to understand their inner workings. Eventually, this curiosity was recognized by the rest of the clan, and they sent him to a local government school in Bestine, a city in the northwestern region of Tatooine.
Ines flourished at this school, spending his teenage years learning all about engineering. Despite not having learned in a formal setting during his early years, he quickly adapted to the school setting and excelled in it, becoming skilled at every subject taught. However, he soon discovered that his true passion was ship design. Ines would attempt to get his hands on any ship diagrams that he could, studying them to better understand the engineering that had created the ships. Despite his success, the reasons why Jawas rarely attended these formal schools became increasingly clear over the years. All of the curriculum was in galactic basic, a language that Jawas can commonly understand but are unable to speak for biological reasons. Additionally, the largely human schools were incredibly hostile towards most aliens, particularly Jawas.
Ines with childhood friend at Bestine
Given his fascination with ships, especially the Corellian engineered YT-series, Ines decided to apply to the Corellia University School of Starship Engineering. Despite initial resistance to having a Jawa attend, Ines successfully convinced them to accept him. He attributes this only partially to his formal education, explaining to reporters that "formal education taught me how to design starships, but it was my father selling droids that taught me how to get a human to agree."
Ines's time in university was one marked by many similar hardships to his time in Bestine's school system. He would often deal with blatant speciesism, with fellow students and even professors commenting, "The school of droid design is across the street." Regardless, Ines pressed through and demonstrated that a Jawa could not only design starships, but could also excel at it. At the university, he specialized in adaptable transport ship design, focusing on modular ships and ships which could be easily adjusted for crews of different species. However, this was largely as a way to focus on ships which could be used better by Jawas without offending even more people at the humancentric university by proposing Jawa-only ships.
Some of Ines blueprints
Despite their initial reservations and sometimes even protests, it appears the university was unexpectedly proud of him when he left, with the university having been able to teach even a Jawa how to become a skilled starship designer. When asked about his time at university, Ines commented, "Even though there were some difficulties along the way, I am still glad that I chose to come to Corellia University. I even wear a Corellian Panther shirt under my robe in support of the local shockball team. The ability I have had to show my fellow sentients of all kinds of races that a Jawa could be a starship designer, and one who graduated with honors, is something I am immensely proud of."
Ines is reportedly looking into working for Jawa Offworld Enterprises, a group of Jawas of typically unusual backgrounds who provide a number of services on the galactic level. Ini Kedi, the leader of the group, had the following to say: "Ines is exactly why we created JOE. Every once in a while, a Jawa appears that is not content with the same life his ancestors had in the Dune Sea, and wishes for something more. Had we been aware of his desires, we would have helped him in the pursuit of his dream, but now that phase of Ines's life is done, and we surely have a spot for him in our roster. I've seen some of his designs, and they show great promise for when we enter the shipbuilding industry, but in the meantime he could help us with our other operations. JOE is in the market of solving problems. We can help those that need facilities, ships, and stations recycled. We can support those that want to set up a recycling hub for space combat needs, or need cheap datacards for fighter fleets. We can analyze and improve old tax planets designs, or we could even sell the best sector maps around! A highly educated and intelligent Jawa like Ines can make JOE better. In that spirit, I'd like to announce the 'Ines Astyne Grant,' financed by JOE, for each and every Jawa that wants to attend a university outside Tatooine. Ines paved his own way, but we'd like to help other with similar dreams."
Promotional banner of Jawa Offworld Enterprises
Broadcast on behalf of Jawa Offworld Enterprises. All donations will be forwarded to JOE.