About 1,200 prospective students, along with their parents and friends, took advantage of Open Day at the University of New England last Friday (7 May) to gain information on the University’s courses and services as well as a taste of campus life.
“UNE prides itself on the overall quality of the educational experience gained by its students,” said the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Jim Barber (pictured here), when welcoming the visitors in a crowded Lazenby Hall. “At UNE we know your name – we take an interest in you.”
“Our mission is to change your life – in both tangible and intangible ways,” Professor Barber said.
Irene Lemon, speaking on behalf of current students, talked about her rewarding experience as a student of Theatre Studies at UNE. Now in her third year, she explained that she had been able to maintain a high level of motivation for her studies by being able “to choose a degree program and a subject that I love”.
“I’ve met amazing people who I’m honoured to call my friends,” Ms Lemon said, adding that UNE offered innumerable opportunities “to investigate, discover, and be inspired”.
A student from Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Alanazi, spoke about the uniquely rewarding educational and cultural experience offered to overseas students by UNE and the wider Armidale community.
While many of the visitors had already decided on a UNE course that they wanted to pursue, and were seeking specific information, others were still preparing to make university and course decisions.
Bronwyn Ritchie travelled to Open Day all the way from Booleroo, SA, with her 16-year-old daughter Annabel, who has a specific interest in animal science studies at UNE.
Ms Ritchie said they were impressed by the size of the campus and the quality of its facilities. “It was great to be able to meet with the lecturers, and the talks were really informative,” she said.
Tom Anset from Tamworth, while still undecided about the course – and the university – he will attend, was impressed by UNE’s Open Day. “I like the way they’ve presented themselves today,” Tom said. Sarah Sanderson, also from Tamworth, said the day made it clear that “you don’t have to go to the city to get the course you’re looking for”.
As well as information and advice on a wide range of study programs, the visitors gained an insight into life on campus – including student life at UNE’s residential colleges. Many were introduced to “Kate UNE”, UNE’s social networking contact for prospective students, and photographs taken on the day were posted on Facebook. An Open Day competition resulted in many of the visitors winning music vouchers, two of them (one from Merriwa and one from Tamworth) winning iPhones, and one lucky visitor winning the main prize – a year’s free accommodation at one of the residential colleges.
Clicking on the photograph of Professor Barber displayed here reveals a photograph of the Academic Manager of UNE’s School of Business, Economics and Public Policy, Dr Peter Shanahan (left) with Open Day visitors Sarah Sanderson and Tom Anset.