By Claire Osborne, Collegian (1999)
In September, the Radford Collegians’ Association and Radford College hosted the first reunion of graduates from the College from 30 years ago. In our biggest welcome-back function to date, we hosted over 200 students and teachers from the classes of 1988, 1998 and 2008.
The TB Millar Hall was the scene for rowdy chatter, squeals of excitement and expressions of genuine delight to be back at Radford. Collegians and their families enjoyed catching up with old friends and being introduced to newly arrived family members.
The drinks (with thanks to the Leyshon family of Mallaluka Wines) and nibbles flowed as guests were entertained by a jazz band that included two current Year 12 students – Adam Davidson and Matthew Trigge – and enjoyed viewing displays of photos from their era. Principal Fiona Godfrey’s welcome to the collegians was an opportunity for guests to hear more about the current and future directions of the College.
The night’s highlight was the prefect-led tours of the school. As collegians wandered the corridors, reminiscing about their time at Radford, they stopped to look at the honour boards and pictures around the place, and posed for photos along the way.
Collegians were impressed by the well-resourced ‘new’ (for them!) Mackinnon Senior School and reminisced about the luxuries of the old common room with ‘a jaffle iron, boiling water and coke machine’. The current vending machine left collegians less-than-impressed, however, with the contents being assessed as ‘way too healthy’.
The Collegians’ Association appointed year group ambassadors to organise after parties for each cohort. Thank you to ambassadors Genevieve Quilty (1988); Yersheena O’Donoghue (1998); and Kelsey Davis, Matt Vincent and Amy Kominek (2008) for their efforts to make the night a success.
Many guests reported that the evening went by too quickly, and collegians are already pledging to catch up more regularly:
‘I loved seeing everyone – it was the best night!!’ – Felicity Ford
‘Such a fun night! So many laughs and so great to catch up.’ – Laura Gaskell
‘What a great night! Bunch of legends’ – Jane Leyshon
‘Was a lovely evening. Not long enough.’ – Genevieve Lai
‘It was great to see everyone, am very glad I came.’ – Anne-Louise Rentell
Facebook groups were alive with posts from those unable to attend ‘wishing they were here’. Some graduates hosted a ‘mini reunion, a few thousand million miles from Canberra with dinner in Switzerland’.
An affirming email sent to the Collegians’ Association and the College stated that ‘at our after event there was much talk of the impact of the event, hospitality and the impressiveness of the leaders of the College tours … these events are significant for many who attend – there were quite a few in the Class of 88 who had not set foot on the campus since they left – some 30 years ago! They felt very welcome’.
Radford’s collegians network is special in the way that it brings graduates together and continues the Radford story. The Collegians’ Association, through its website, is that network in action. To read Collegian stories, keep up to date with the latest news and view photos from events, go to radfordcollegians.com.auTo Home