The Educated Life: UC's Campus of the Future

Over the next 10-15 years, the University of Canberra's Bruce campus will be transformed into a series of precincts, renowned for facilitating national and international partnerships and transformational research and learning.

Plans for development of the campus include new health and innovation precincts, a cutting-edge residential development, UC Public Hospital, aged-care facilities, sports facilities,  new childcare facilities and a Great Hall.

Proceeds from the development will be used to support the University's strategic objectives as well a specially created Endowment Fund, an inter-generational gift that will support the University for decades to come.

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Campus of the Future

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Thank you…

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Thank you. Good evening. To those of you in
the room, and to those of you streaming from

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wherever you are in the world.

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As Vice-Chancellor it is my great pleasure
to welcome you to the annual State of the

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University address.

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I’d like to start proceedings by acknowledging
the Ngunnawal People, the traditional custodians

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of the land on which the original Bruce Campus
was built, and I acknowledge their continuing

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custodianship.

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Today we are joined by special guests, the
ACT Chief Minister, members of the ACT Legislative

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Assembly, distinguished alumni and former
Vice-Chancellor Professor Stephen Parker AO

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(who is looking remarkably fit, given his
advancing years).

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Ladies and gentleman, today I ask you to cast
your minds back to 2015 and consider what

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we have achieved. For those who weren’t
yet born, you’re about to hear the story

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behind the Educated Life you now enjoy.

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Big goals take time, planning, understanding,
and vision.

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15 years ago, we saw the start of what was possible. New campus accommodation, the Health

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Hub, the Sporting Commons, and the UC Research
Institute for Sport and Exercise had all become

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a reality.

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The ACT Government approved the building of
the UC Public Hospital, now a major teaching

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hospital which drives ground-breaking research.

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Our plans to create an inspired new housing
typology on campus for the Canberra community

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began to surface.

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Meanwhile UC strongly supported the creative
arts and humanities with initiatives such

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as the VC’s Poetry Prize, which nurtured
a campus environment anchored in artistic

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and cultural endeavour.

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These were not isolated developments. Rather,
they were integral components of a grand vision

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to transform UC into an innovative campus
for the future...

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…Developments which were influenced by
the in-depth exploration of ideas, and a planning

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process which set out to prepare the campus
for its exciting evolution.

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…Developments which resulted from robust
discussions and the unrestricted exchange

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of ideas with stakeholders, think tanks, governments
and institutions.

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Choosing not to follow change, but to lead
it, UC’s physical surroundings were transformed

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into an integrated learning community, an
inspiring nucleus of diverse local, interstate

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and international operations.

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Including one of the largest health faculties
in the country,

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a thriving eco-system of research in biotech,
biomedicine, sports tech, material fabrication

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and IT innovation…

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…which has, of course, already led to countless
discoveries benefitting everyday life and

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next generation technology.

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Its positive effect on the ACT’s economy
is evident.

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Our community thrives because of its greatest
asset, you.

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Many of you now live in the Campus Community’s
3,000 sustainable dwellings, award-winning

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for their innovative architecture, and integrated
with a health and wellbeing program.

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As well as the thousands of staff, alumni
and others from all walks of life who call

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the Campus Community home, thousands more
visit each day,

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creating a lively village of Utopian living,
based in a context of ideas, invention and

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knowledge... which provides the support needed
to foster such a context.

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By focusing on successful students in primary
and secondary schools, and by transitioning

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international students to academic life in
Australia, we have encouraged the brightest

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young minds to undertake our degree programs.

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While the University of the Third Age draws
on our units to offer intellectual exploration

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to Canberra’s growing retiree population.

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The Great Hall stands amongst wonderful open
spaces. Its beautiful exhibition space extends

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Canberra’s cultural capabilities.

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The University now seamlessly connects with
the thriving Belconnen CBD and Lake Ginninderra

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forming a stimulating arts, entertainment,
employment and innovation collective.

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In times gone by, monasteries and Universities
were designed to inspire worship, solitude

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and scholarship.

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They were often walled to reinforce the idea
they were apart from the general community.

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Something different.

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UC is something different. It has no walls
around its grounds. It does not retreat from

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the world. It engages with it.

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Canberra has earned its reputation as the
education capital of Australia, an authentic

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university town, analogous to small cities
in Europe and the United States which are

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defined by their prominent schools, institutes
and universities.

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Today, in 2030, you are all witness to how
the University’s strong sense of mission

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IS manifested in the campus environment around
us.

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It’s evident, the moment you step onto the
campus, that this is a university committed

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to the expansion of minds through education
and the pursuit of ideas, committed to professional

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education, applied research, culture and activity
for the benefit of everyone.

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Whatever their age, whatever their stage,
whatever their background, and whatever their

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physical abilities, we learn and discover
together.

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This is 
The Educated Life.

Get a glimpse of UC's future campus!

Watch the University of Canberra 2030 Annual "State of the University" Address by future Vice-Chancellor Professor Jane Chen.


In 2030 the UC campus in Bruce will be an extraordinary place.  People from around the world will visit it and witness a new-model community in action: a community from young to old living an educated life. 

The planning for this transformation started in 2008, driven by a vision of how universities will be in the future and UC's specific goals of:

  • Advancing our educational and research performance;
  • Integrating with the surrounding district of Belconnen; and
  • Adding to the Territory's growth as a knowledge economy.

Recent developments at UC provide a glimpse of what is possible in the future; in particular the opening in 2014 of:

  • Cooper Lodge student residences, with associated retail space
  • The Health Hub, with its GP Super Clinic, allied health and student-led clinics and a research collaboration with the National ICT Australia (NICTA),  and
  • The Sporting Commons, with the co-location there of the Brumbies Super XV Rugby Team, ACTSport, Special Olympics ACT and the UC Research Institute of Sport and Exercise.

Public consultation is now under way over the sketch designs for the University of Canberra Public Hospital, construction of which commences in 2016 and will take two years to complete.

These four developments – Cooper Lodge, the Health Hub, the Sporting Commons and the UC Public Hospital – are not isolated or one-off projects.  They are part of a long-term initiative to make the main campus of UC a campus of the future, and to embed UC's identity as an innovative university committed to professional education and applied research. 

The transformation of the UC campus in Bruce is about to take off.