Celebrating 40 years of teaching

Opening day of teach processional parade, 1975.

As the next generation of students gets a glimpse of university life at Open Day, Griffith University is celebrating 40 years of teaching at Nathan campus.Old and new will come together to mark the celebration at Open Day on August 9.

One-hundred and twenty students and staff from 1975 will attend a champagne brunch at the Sir Samuel Griffith Building with special guest Emeritus Professor Colin Mackerras.

“It was a wonderful and memorable experience working at Griffith in the early days. Everybody was excited about doing something that had never been done before, a radical new form of education based on interdisciplinarity,’’ Professor Mackerras said. Read more about Colin Mackerras here.

In 1978, the first cohort of 170 Griffith students graduated from the Schools of Humanities, Modern Asian Studies, Science and Australian Environmental Studies.

Elizabeth Stevens was part of the original cohort and recalls a time of close learning, collegiality and collaboration. Studying a Bachelor of Arts in comparative literature and history, she remembers her undergraduate days with fondness.

“They say your school years are your best, but that’s not true. Those three years at Nathan campus were a phenomenal experience,’’ she said.

After graduating with her BA, Elizabeth completed a Graduate Diploma of Applied Linguistics and then a Master of Philosophy, also at Griffith, some years later.

Over the years, she’s maintained contact with the university working in education as a research assistant and lecturer. She is currently working with the Griffith Institute for Educational Research as a research assistant.

“I’m looking forward to connecting with former students and lecturers at the event on Sunday,’’ she said.

Another 1978 graduate, Colin Noy, credits Griffith for his successful career as a science teacher.

“Griffith gave me an excellent grounding in all of the sciences,’’ the Brisbane Boys College teacher said.

“I studied with a great bunch of people, it was such a close-knit group and absolutely fabulous.”

But a degree wasn’t the only thing Colin obtained from Griffith. He also met his wife Denise (nee Phillips), who was studying modern Asian languages, on his second day of university.

“I came from Manly, she came from Wynnum and a mutual friend put us in touch and told me to give her a lift to and from uni as it was taking her two hours each way on public transport. We’ve been married for 36 years.”

Colin is part of a group of science graduates who have been meeting regularly for the past 40 years and is looking forward to catching up with old friends and new on Sunday.

To find out more on Open Day click here.