The Raymond McMillan Legacy

A chance encounter with a University of Adelaide lecturer at his high school led South Australian Raymond McMillan to win a scholarship and study Civil Engineering at the University.


Born in 1926, Ray grew up during the Great Depression in a single-parent household in the southern suburbs. A bright student, he went on to study at Unley High School, and it was there he met University of Adelaide lecturer “Taffy” Farrent, who was visiting the school to promote the University’s engineering program. Inspired to apply, Ray won a scholarship and graduated with a Civil Engineering degree in 1949.

Following Ray’s death in 2019, the family business decided to make a gift to the University in his name.

Lee-Ann Hunt, a Director of McMillan Contracting and Ray McMillan’s daughter, says: “Going to university changed the course of my father’s life, and that of our family.

“Our company’s gift is aimed at giving back to the University that gave my father so much, and supporting young students to realise the full potential of their talents in STEM careers.

“We know my father, who benefited from a scholarship as a student at the University of Adelaide, would be proud to see how his company is now encouraging and supporting others like him. Many academically gifted students need additional support to be able to succeed in their studies, just as my father did.”

“Going to university changed the course of my father’s life, and that of our family.”Lee-Ann Hunt