The centre of Port Macquarie will be transformed into a sea of caps and gowns on Saturday as the University of Newcastle celebrates its first formal graduation ceremony in the region and its 100th nursing graduate.
Twenty three graduates of the Bachelor of Teaching/Bachelor of Arts (Primary) will join 31 Bachelor of Nursing graduates to celebrate the completion of their studies.
University of Newcastle Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nicholas Saunders, said the ceremony, to be held at the Glasshouse, was a special event.
“Graduation is a time of great celebration as we formally mark a significant milestone in the academic journey of our students,” Professor Saunders said.
“It is also an opportunity to thank family and friends who have been with our students on their university journey.”
Professor Saunders said the first formal graduation ceremony in Port Macquarie was a chance to reflect on the significant role the community played in securing tertiary education opportunities in the region.
“The Port Macquarie-Hastings community has fought long and hard to for local education opportunities,” Professor Saunders said.
Beginning with the Hastings College of Adult Education in 1983, community support for quality tertiary education resulted in an alliance being formed between the community, TAFE NSW - North Coast Institute and the University of Newcastle in 2002.
The University joined the Institute on its Port Macquarie campus, welcoming the first students into the Bachelor of Nursing degree in 2004. A major milestone will be reached on Saturday as the University welcomes its 100th nursing graduate.
Today, the University has close to 340 students studying nursing, teaching and the tertiary preparation course Open Foundation by Distance, and the campus has become an innovative, shared tertiary precinct with purpose-built facilities.
“The story of the partnership is one of great success and I thank the Port Macquarie-Hasting community for its support and dedication to building the educational capacity of the region,” Professor Saunders said.
Graduation ceremony details:
A procession of students will move from the Glasshouse, corner of Clarence and Hay Streets, Port Macquarie to the Town Green at 12pm. The ceremony will be held at 1pm at the Glasshouse. The Occasional Address will be by Rob Oakeshott MP, Federal Member for Lyne. Media are welcome to attend.
Graduates are available for interview. Please call Carmen Swadling on 02 4985 4276 before COB Friday 25 February for information and contact details.