The Chancellor of the University of New England, Dr Richard Torbay, yesterday officially opened the UNE branch of United Campus Bookshops (UCB) in its new location at the heart of the University’s campus.
UCB has been in operation at UNE since November 2001. Late last year, after nearly three years of planning, the shop (including retail space and administrative facility) moved to spacious new premises adjacent to the University’s central courtyard.
Mr Kristian Romuld, Chief Executive Officer of UCB, attended yesterday’s opening. “Over the years we have enjoyed being an integral part of the vibrant academic community at the University of New England,” Mr Romuld said. “Our move into this fantastic new space reflects the commitment we have to the University.”
In addition to adding much-needed additional shelving for academic texts, the new shop front has allowed for a new and extensive range of non-academic books to be available for browsing by staff, students and the general public for the first time. Staff and student discounts apply to the non-academic as well as to the academic books.
The Chancellor, Dr Torbay, said he was delighted to have the honour of officially opening the bookshop, believing it to be a great asset to the campus and to the Armidale community.
“A significant amount of work has taken place to get this bookshop open, and I would like to congratulate all parties involved for working together to achieve this great outcome for the community,” Dr Torbay said.
The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jim Barber, said that the new bookshop, while providing “an essential facility” for UNE, greatly enhanced the overall amenity of the University’s campus.
UCB is a family-owned, Australian business that has been operating bookshops for over 30 years. It started with TAFE colleges, and over the years has operated at 20 TAFE colleges and four university campuses. “The official opening of the bookshop is a timely opportunity to acknowledge the importance of the partnership between United Campus Bookshops and the University of New England,” Mr Romuld said. “The opportunity to play a part in the growth of the University as it goes from strength to strength is exciting. We look forward to continuing our support of the University community every step of the way, providing a first-class facility and first-class service for the general public, UNE staff, and students – both on campus and externally.”
A Welcome to Country by Mr Steve Widders, Community Liaison Office at Armidale Dumaresq Council, began the proceedings at the opening function yesterday afternoon. The Guyra Shire Mayor, Councillor Hans Hietbrink, acted as MC, and the Armidale Dumaresq Mayor, Councillor Peter Ducat, was among the guests.
Clicking on the UCB image displayed here reveals a photograph, taken at yesterday’s opening function, of (from left) Professor Jim Barber, Dr Richard Torbay, and Mr Kristian Romuld.