Collette Swindells Curtin Graduation 2009

Every time, it made me proud to call Curtin my alma mater

My first memory of WAIT was as a small child of about 8 years old, accompanying my Mum there, who was working as a Lecturer in English. I remember playing in the sand and the pine trees; being overwhelmed by the size of the commanding buildings. These trees and buildings were still there, years later, when I completed a Double Degree at Curtin University and became the Vice-President, then President, of the Curtin University Student Guild.

During my 4 years at Curtin University, I was proud to know that my university was an exemplar across Australia, and even the world, for employing women in leading positions. This became something of a running joke as I sat on many Selection Panel meetings with the former Vice Chancellor Jeanette Hackett, and former Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Jane den Hollander, among others, when we were forced to even the balance by actively selecting male staff members to join us.

But perhaps my strongest memory of Curtin is from the many Graduation ceremonies I attended as a member of University Council, and the beautiful film they created to tell the stories of their students, and the incredible fireworks display that accompanied this afterwards. Every time, it made me proud to call Curtin my alma mater.

Collette Swindells