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Indigenous graduates recognised at UC celebration dinner

Elly Mackay

20 April 2021: Twenty-six Indigenous graduates have been celebrated at a dinner hosted by the University of Canberra’s Ngunnawal Centre last night.

The cohort – who will this week receive degrees across all the University’s faculties – came together at the Ann Harding Centre with their family and friends to celebrate their successes and graduation.

The dinner was hosted by Bachelor of Sports Media student Adina Brown. In addition to the graduating students and their support networks, it was attended by the University executive.

Pro-Vice Chancellor Indigenous Professor Peter Radoll said the dinner was a chance for the University to applaud the graduates on their important achievements.

“Many of these graduates are the first in their family to receive a university education and it’s important that we recognise what a significant achievement that is,” Professor Radoll said.

“This cohort consists of various levels of graduates, including diplomas, undergraduate degrees, honours, graduate certificates, masters, and a doctorate.”

Professor Radoll said the event was also an opportunity for the students to farewell their peers and to network.

“Whether these graduates plan on staying in Canberra or moving away, the connections they’ve made through the Ngunnawal Centre will stay with them for life,” he said.

“The university experience is about more than just learning and education, it’s about taking away social connections and getting life experience.”

The Ngunnawal Centre at the University of Canberra has been in operation for over 30 years, supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students throughout their studies. The centre provides academic, personal, and cultural support to students.

Professor Radoll said it was only fitting that graduation celebrations were hosted by the centre.

“Many of our graduates have been regular visitors to the centre, and have benefited greatly from the services provided,” he said.

“They’ve also made connections with the Ngunnawal Centre staff, so being able to say a proper farewell is a meaningful moment for them.”