Time for 1500 celebrations

miller-gerlachFifteen graduates of a postgraduate Flinders course taught in China will fly in to receive their degrees at the Friday morning ceremony of the University’s graduation week.

The group are all graduates of the Master of Hospital Administration (MHA), which is taught in Beijing and Tianjin by visiting Flinders academics and local university staff.

Flinders has taught its highly regarded postgraduate courses in China for more than 10 years. Many of the MHA graduates hold key administrative positions in the Chinese health system.

Flinders University’s Chancellor, Mr Stephen Gerlach (pictured with Dr Patricia Miller), said that while Flinders regularly holds conferral of degree ceremonies in China, it was particularly pleasing that a group of Chinese graduates could come to Adelaide this week.

“We are very happy to have them represented at the University’s major celebration of the scholarly and academic achievements of our students,” Mr Gerlach said.

Some 1500 graduates of Flinders courses will receive their qualifications from the Chancellor and Deputy Chancellor, Ms Leonie Clyne, over the course of eight ceremonies held on campus, the first of which took place yesterday.

The ceremonies will also see the award of four honorary doctorates to prominent Australians who have made contributions to higher education and to society as a whole.

Tom Gleghorn, whose career as a painter spans 50 years, will receive an honorary doctorate in recognition of his work as an artist and teacher. Mr Gleghorn’s teaching posts included the National Art School, the Canberra Art School and the former Sturt College of Advanced Education, now part of Flinders University. A winner of numerous art prizes, his abstract paintings are held by major galleries around Australia. He has been a mentor to numerous artists and is a foundation member of the Helpmann Academy.

Dr Patricia Miller has been the Deputy to the Northern Territory Administrator since 2002, and is CEO of the Central Australian Aboriginal Legal Aid Service. She has served on the management board of the University’s Centre for Remote Health since 2008. She will receive an honorary doctorate in recognition of her contributions to the legal, social, sporting and higher education development of Central Australia and the Northern Territory.

Also receiving an honorary doctorate is Dr Rosemary Bryant, Australia’s Chief Nurse and Midwifery Officer. She is being acknowledged for her contribution to the nursing profession by representing the interests of industry and advocating for nurse education to government and policy decision makers in Australia and internationally.

The fourth doctoral recipient is Mr Nick Begakis, whose successful career in business includes roles in manufacturing and as an entrepreneur, merchant banker and company director. A member of the University Council for 11 years, he remains Chair of the Engineering Advisory Committee. Currently director of Business SA and of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, he has been instrumental in developing the University’s engagement with the State’s business community.

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