On 12 December 2019, a group of outstanding students graduated from the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific at a moving ceremony at Llewellyn Hall.
We had 120 undergraduate students, receiving degrees in everything from Asia-Pacific Studies (Year in Asia) and Asian Studies, to International Security, Development Studies and degrees combined with Commerce, Finance, and Political Science amongst many variations.
Notably, College student Harry Needham was awarded a University Medal, to recognise his First Class Honours and exceptional academic excellence across three degrees.
We also had 208 students receive Post-graduate degrees across all disciplines, from Strategic Studies to Public Policy, Military Defence to International Relations, as well as International and Development Economics, Diplomacy, Climate Change and Environmental and Resource Economics. This cohort included our other University Medal recipient, Tatum Rose Street, for her Master of Asian and Pacific Studies (Advanced).
In addition, nineteen of our students received their PhDs, covering diverse and critical topics for our region. These included Health Service Delivery in Papua New Guinea, with a focus on women’s health (Ellen Aua Kulumbu), Rescuing a Language from Extinction: documentation and practical steps for revitalisation of (Western) Yugur (Xueqing Zhong), Opportunistic Repression: Managing Anti-State Dissent in Post-authoritarian Indonesia (Dominic Berger) and The Economics and Governance of Multipurpose Hydropower Reservoirs (Paul Wyrwoll).
The day was an important milestone in our calendar as our brilliant students celebrated their graduation. Their success is also a testament to the incredible quality, dedication and inspiration of the teaching staff of this College.
Their energy and their commitment is the cornerstone of everything that our College represents across all our Schools – and the vital work we do in exploring the ideas and advancing the arguments that support Australia’s relationship with the Asia Pacific region. We should all feel proud of the shared success of our College, built as it is on the efforts of everyone who is part of the extended College family, students, teaching and administrative staff included.
In a year filled with both achievements, challenges and change, it is inspiring and reassuring to know that we can work together to produce excellent outcomes and be leaders in our fields and in some of the most important debates that face us as an Australian community, regardless of the obstacles and difficulties.
Congratulations to all our awards recipients at this year’s ceremony. What a wonderful way to finish the year.