Bendigo graduates' time to celebrate

With some waiting up to two years to celebrate their years of hard work, 750 graduands from La Trobe’s Bendigo campus will have their moment in the spotlight this week.

A further 783 graduands will receive their degrees in absentia.

In a break from tradition, to accommodate COVID-safe practices, 22 small ceremonies will be held across three days at the campus’ library event space.

The graduands have completed a wide range of courses – including undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, and PhDs, in law, business, engineering, nursing, allied health, dentistry, pharmacy, science, planning and education.

La Trobe Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar AO said he was delighted that the hard work and commitment of the graduates could finally be recognised and celebrated.

“After an incredibly tough two years, it’s wonderful that we can come together in person to acknowledge the achievements of these impressive people,” Professor Dewar said.

“Whether they completed their studies remotely, or met the challenges of the pandemic as a new employee in the workplace, all of these graduates are to be congratulated for their perseverance and dedication.

“The skills they have developed in critical thinking and flexible working over the last two years will make them an even greater asset to employers for years to come,” Professor Dewar said.

Bendigo Head of Campus Dr Julie Rudner said many of the graduates had already made a significant contribution to their local communities.

“We have hundreds of graduates celebrating today who have been working for many months in local hospitals, schools, engineering consultancies, accounting firms, community health centres and local government organisations – to name a few,” Dr Rudner said.

“They play a critical role in supporting the regional workforce – not just in central Victoria, but right across the state and country.

“It won’t just be the graduates and their families celebrating their remarkable achievements this week, but their employers, clients, colleagues, and the whole community,” Dr Rudner said.

La Trobe’s last graduation ceremony was held in Bendigo was in May 2019. Ceremonies scheduled for 2020 and early 2021 were postponed due to COVID restrictions.

All together – including those graduating in absentia – Bendigo’s class of 2020 (completing in 2019) has 781 graduates plus 10 PhD graduates. Bendigo’s class of 2021 has 766 graduates plus nine PhD graduates.

Image: Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students) Professor Jessica Vanderlelie (left), Galou Mabior and Dr Kate Ashman

Media contact: Kate O'Connor,  k.o', 0436 189 629