I rise to make a statement on the University of Ballarat annual report 2006.
Although the institution’s heritage dates back to 1870, it was in 2006 that it
completed its 13th year of operating as a university. During 2006 it achieved
many goals and set many more goals for the future. To begin with, I would like
to acknowledge and congratulate Professor David Battersby, who was then the new
vice-chancellor of the University of Ballarat.
The university takes great pride in being a modern institution
and is thus focused on organisational sustainability and environmental
management. This is seen through the university’s National Centre for
Sustainability. It continued its partnership with Sustainability Victoria to
maintain sustainability information outlets and hold workshops for western
This included community workshops in Ararat, Ballarat, Bacchus
Marsh, the secondary school principals’ workshop, and a presence at Springfest
Ballarat and the Alternative Expo at Halls Gap.
It also undertook practical exercises such as the Hopetoun
Community Sustainable Energy Initiative. It received $100 000 from the state
government to study the Hopetoun power demand and to investigate renewable
alternative energies in the area, which is another community in Western Victoria
Region. The study also researched waste management and the needs and practices
necessary to investigate potential sustainable industries for Hopetoun.
In the educational area, the university and the community also
had the pleasure of having the esteemed Dr David Suzuki, hosted by the
university, give a public lecture in September of 2006 as part of his
international and national book tour.
It was open to the wider community and of course the university
staff and students; it attracted an audience of 750.
During the reporting period a behavioural change program was
also undertaken. It was titled ‘Switch Off’ and it was launched to develop a
culture of energy efficiency within the staff working at the university’s
campuses. The program involved short training sessions for 35 staff volunteers on
influencing behavioural change, and this was accompanied by posters and stickers
distributed across the university campuses.
As well as the focus on education and energy resource
management, the university implemented substantial energy reduction measures
including the installation of more efficient gas boilers, higher efficiency
lighting and lighting movement sensors. The year 2006 was a great year of
achievement for the students of the University of Ballarat and reflects the
quality of staff and education at the university.
Graduate Thomas Blake completed certificate III in agriculture
at the Primary Industries Training Centre and received the QBE
FarmGate-Victorian Farmers Federation Apprentice of the Year award. This is the
second year in a row that a University of Ballarat graduate has been recognised
for this award.
Grant Luscombe, a graduate from the bachelor of education,
physical education, degree at the university was named the Herald Sun Secondary
Graduate Teacher of the Year and was nominated by the principal of the Casterton
Secondary School, the school where Grant teaches. That is another great school
in the electorate of Western Victoria.
In the School of Business Services a student from each program
received a recognition for excellence award. These included medals in the World
Skills Competition, Apprentice of the Year, the university’s Vice-Chancellor
Award and other local awards. In the schools of science and engineering,
graduates continued to secure nearly 100 per cent employment, with salaries
substantially above the national average.
In conclusion, I wish all the best for the future to the
University of Ballarat.
Under the leadership of vice-chancellor Professor Battersby it
is clear that the university is making great inroads, not just in terms of
high-quality higher education performance but also because its linkages in the
community of Ballarat and beyond are exceptional in all fields and make it a
true community leader at the campus and beyond. I commend this report to the