Reuniting with the past
Class of 1966 Diploma in Physiotherapy graduates Armed with a first-class education, thousands of graduates pass through the doors of Bonython Hall every year ready to start or continue their careers.
Many graduates take the opportunity to return to the University to attend alumni reunion events to find out what has changed, renew old friendships or make new ones.
Throughout their careers our graduates travel far and wide as they pursue opportunities to seek new knowledge and experiences locally and overseas. According to Manager, Alumni Relations, Lisa Taplin, the chance to return to the University where it all began is something many graduates are choosing to take up, to reconnect with their past and each other.
“Graduates of the University enjoy revisiting the people and the places that made their time at University unique, reminiscing about days gone by, and reflecting on where life has taken them,” says Lisa.
Throughout the year, faculties and alumni networks from across the University host or support a number of reunion events. The most prominent of these is the Golden Jubilee, which sees the return of graduates 50 years after graduation.
“At the Golden Jubilee, in addition to a special sit-down lunch, alumni get to re-enact their graduation ceremony in Bonython Hall, complete with graduation gowns, the academic procession and the presentation of certificates,” says Lisa.
Last year saw the return of the Class of 1966, where Janet Crawford (nee Manuell) and Max Pfitzner were able to experience a graduation ceremony for the very first time.
“We didn’t have a graduation; it was something that we never got to have for completion of our Diploma in Physiotherapy – so it was lovely to finally experience it,” says Janet.
“I really enjoyed the ceremony: going into the hall, wearing our gowns, seeing other graduates receive their certificates from the Chancellor and listening to the speeches – it was very special.
“And of course – seeing the girls who Max and I trained with was also wonderful – and extremely emotional.”
For Max it was catching up with people he hadn’t seen since graduation that made the day
memorable – the people he studied with, but also those with whom he did extracurricular activities.
“Most of us had some extracurricular activities, like playing sports for the University, and so it was great to catch-up with people I played football, cricket and tennis with,” says Max.
“And 50 years on we all remember playing our sports much better of course, like champions.”
The Golden Jubilee was one of several reunion events that took place last year. Others included a reunion of engineering graduates from the Class of 1946 who celebrated 70 years since graduation, and the Roseworthy Old Collegians Association (ROCA) reunion dinner.
“We are looking forward to supporting many more reunion events for our alumni this year,” says Lisa.
“This year we will welcome the Class of 1967 back for their Golden Jubilee and host a reunion of economics graduates from 1974 – 1978.
“We are also supporting social and learning events presented by our alumni networks, and hoping to increase the number of networks locally and internationally, to bring our alumni together more often.”
The University’s Alumni Relations team is keen to support faculties or alumni who would like to organise a reunion. To find out more about how the alumni team can help please contact
Story by Kelly Brown
Photo by Jo-Anna Robinson