Tony Windsor to give UNE Graduation address

Published 02 April 2009

teachingawardsTony Windsor, the Federal Member for New England, will give the Occasional Address tomorrow at the University of New England’s third Autumn Graduation ceremony for 2009.

Mr Windsor, who holds a Bachelor of Economics degree from UNE, will – in the presence of their families and friends – address an audience of successful candidates for degrees, diplomas and certificates in the fields of Economics, Business and Law.

The first two ceremonies, held last week, were for the Sciences and Health (Friday 27 March) and Education (Saturday 28 March). The last of the four ceremonies – for those graduating in Arts – will be this Saturday, 4 April.

During last Saturday’s ceremony, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alan Pettigrew, presented Vice-Chancellor’s Awards for Excellence in Learning and Teaching to two outstanding lecturers in UNE’s School of Education: Dr Ingrid Harrington and Dr Pep Serow.

Introducing Dr Harrington, Professor Pettigrew commended her ability to engage her students “by providing them with a variety of learning experiences suitable to their needs”. “She has adopted a reflective approach to her teaching,” he said, “that enables her to learn what works for different students – and why it works.”

He said Dr Serow was “driven by a passion for mathematics teaching that focuses on the development of a variety of pedagogically sound methods to teach mathematics to students”. “Her sustained concern for student learning is evidenced in her teaching philosophy, her uses of educational technology, and the recognition she receives from her peers and the wider community,” he added.

The Occasional Address speaker at last Saturday’s ceremony was the Head of School at PLC Armidale, Debra Kelliher. Speaking to the graduands in Education, Ms Kelliher emphasised the important role that they could play in the lives of their future students – “so important that you are bound to be someone’s hero”. “All of us, looking back to our childhood and school years, can think of those we looked up to,” she said. “Many of you will have started this journey to be a teacher because of a hero – someone who made a difference, who recognised your talent and potential and let you understand they saw it.”

“We can all hold values that stem from our deepest self, and be a hero for a child or a student,” she said, urging the graduands to “hold close to your values and courage, and remember your heroes who inspired you”.

The installation of the Hon. Richard Torbay MP as the University’s new Chancellor was a highlight of the first of this year’s Autumn Graduation ceremonies. Dr Torbay is personally presenting testamurs to about 1,000 graduands over the four ceremonies, while the total number of people graduating from UNE this autumn (including those unable to attend the ceremonies) is about 2,500.

THE PHOTOGRAPH displayed here shows Dr Ingrid Harrington (left) and Dr Pep Serow with the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alan Pettigrew.