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Orientation Week, February 2006
Bedroom Philosopher shares wisdom at commencement
15 February 2006: Some advice from comedian and alumnus Justin Heazlewood's grandmother kicked off his address to this morning's Commencement Ceremony.
"Knuckle down and don't mess about," were the words of wisdom she'd asked him to share as part of speech that prompted plenty of laughter from the audience of new students and their parents.
He also advised students not procrastinate and if possible to get all their assignments done in the first week so they could relax during the rest of the semester. Where procrastination was unavoidable he said it should be quality time and nagging work pressures should not be allowed to disrupt a good episode of The Simpsons.
Originally from Tasmania ("you can take the man out of Tasmania, but then it's just Tasia," he pointed out) Mr Heazlewood shared his first impressions of Canberra when he arrived to study his creative writing degree.
"When you're from a country town, Canberra is like New York with roundabouts," he said.
He recalled his days as the "hippy freak busking on the concourse", but said his success, which has earned him a regular spot on Triple J and a best selling album as the Bedroom Philosopher, could be traced back to his time at the University of Canberra.
Other speakers at the ceremony included Vice-Chancellor Roger Dean, Ngunnawal elder Agnes Shea and dean of students Heather Prior.
Ms Shea welcomed the audience to Ngunnawal country, adding she was "happy and proud" to be at the event.
Professor Dean emphasised the importance of maintaining interests outside one's area of study.
"I really believe it's important to try to balance work and play," he said.
Three student jokes, courtesy of Justin Heazlewood:
How many students does it take to change a light bulb?
Three students walked into a bar.
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