27 January, 2009

Australia Day at the NCV

Monday 26th January is Australia Day. On this day Australians commemorate the arrival of the First Fleet in 1788, which marked the start of British colonisation of this country. Until recently it has been a day that some Australians have found hard to celebrate because for almost two centuries the nation largely ignored the fact that Australia’s first settlers were our Indigenous Australians who archaeologists suggest have been here for 40,000 years. We celebrate the day in many different ways, but typically we spend time with friends and family. Here are some examples of how residents of the NCV celebrated the day.

Carmen and I invited our eldest daughter and son-in-law and three of our grandchildren over for the afternoon. We had our own Australia Day party (see below).

Above: Jacob, Elsie & Rebecca wave the Aussie flag, with cricket on the TV!

Above: Having fun in the central courtyard

Above: Promise they won't be hiding in your wardrobes when you move in!

Meanwhile, some of our residents were simply hanging out in the NCV games room.

Above: A group of postgrads hang out together on Australia Day

Above: And only one Aussie in the room


23 January, 2009

Latest shots of the NCV

Residents are flowing into the NCV and the building now looks fantastic. Some shots that I took today appear below.

Above: The eastern facade of the NCV with its wonderful acoustic screen

Above: Central courtyard viewed from Level 4

Above: View of the NE corner of the Eastern facade

Above: Views of the rooftop terrace and BBQ area

Above: One of the 13 common rooms (2 on each floor)

Above: View of the eastern facade


13 January, 2009

Our first social activity

As I indicated in my last post, we opened the doors to the New College Village on the 5th January. While we only have a small number of residents in the building at this early stage of the year we have commenced our social activities. Last night, one week after we opened, we had a dessert and coffee night for those residents who are already in the building and will be with us all year. It was a great night where we met and shared something of our backgrounds and experiences. I spoke briefly about the NCV and our plans for the year, people asked questions and we had a great supper (thanks Carmen!).

The group is made up mostly of MBA students at the moment who started their course on the day of the supper. We also have a small number of research students and other masters students. The current residents (see below) come from varied countries including Pakistan, USA, Thailand, Hong Kong, Australia (Sydney!), France, Italy, India and Singapore (not bad for such a small group).

Above: The first group of NCV residents (the advance party!) at supper in the Main Common Room 12.1.09

It's not too late to join us, we're still taking applications!


05 January, 2009

We're in the building!

Today is the first day that we have had residents in the building. I write this blog post from the Dean's apartment. Fourteen other residents are in their rooms upstairs. We are the 'advance party' in residence on this first night. While the majority of residents will not arrive until February some residents start classes next week and some are continuing doctoral students who have their research under way.

Our very first resident to check in was Laura Sharpe who is in the 3rd year of a doctoral program. She has not come far, just 60 km from Penrith on the western edge of Sydney, but others have come from various parts of the world including the USA, Hong Kong, China and Singapore.

The building looks wonderful and will be even better when it is filled with its full complement of 316 residents.

I was also joined in the Village on day one by Rebecca Barnes who will be acting as our Senior Resident throughout January and Connie Voon who is our new receptionist.

It's been an exciting day.