In Summary

  • Swinburne Vice-Chancellor ‌Professor Linda Kristjanson AO delivers her end-of-year message for 2019

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As another busy year for Swinburne comes to end, I say thank you.

Thank you for your commitment, enthusiasm and hard work.

Thank you for continuing to engage and inspire our students.

Thank you for pursuing outstanding research that is relevant and impactful.

Together you have enhanced our reputation as a world-class university and allowed us to truly make a positive impact.

2019 has been a year of growth and change for Swinburne.

We welcomed Professor John Pollaers OAM as Swinburne’s fifth Chancellor. He has brought significant experience from the public and private sectors, as well as great intellect and energy.

It has been a year of innovation as we continue to transform how we deliver education.

In partnership with Microsoft, Adobe and Portfolium, we are helping our students to develop the skills and mindset needed for the future world of work.

Our students are learning to use drones in construction. They are designing and creating prototypes in our new Protolab and they have led the way with their Be a Better Human campaign - promoting consent and respectful behaviour.

Our Croydon campus was enhanced with a renovation that signalled our open door to the community and the Hawthorn Library has a fully refurbished Late Lab, improved study spaces and a new café.

We have expanded our global capability.

We officially launched Swinburne locations in Sydney and Hanoi and opened our first China office, in Nanjing.

Swinburne is ever more closely connected with international centres of innovation in the United States, Israel, and Germany.

We deepened our relationships with industry, initiating research-led collaborations with the world’s leading companies, including Capgemini and Amazon Web Services.

Our whole-of-university strategy for Industry 4.0 was recognised with an Australian Business Award for Business Innovation and we were once again ranked among the world’s top universities.

In 2019, we extended our reach into the communities we serve.

We renewed our partnership with Richmond Football Club and we joined forces with Bendigo Bank to launch the Community Bank at Swinburne - enabling us all to invest in projects, programs and people at Swinburne.

We have maintained our strong commitment to supporting diversity and inclusion.

Swinburne stood with 13 of Australia’s leading organisations to declare our support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

We welcomed our inaugural Vice-Chancellor’s Fellows for Multicultural Engagement and for Indigenous Leadership: journalist Helen Kapalos and author, historian and Aboriginal rights activist, Dr Jackie Huggins AM

In the coming year we can expect new challenges for the university sector. We operate in an increasingly competitive environment and are not immune to the global economic and social challenges that affect industry, government and communities.

I am confident we will continue to work together to manage our resources intelligently and responsibly.

We will be strategic in our investments with a clear focus on value, impact and sustainability.

This year’s Your Voice survey reinforced qualities that I observe every day – you, the Swinburne staff, remain highly engaged and dedicated.

With a strong focus on supporting and developing effective leadership throughout the university, we will work together to continue to improve our processes and technology as a basis for collaboration and innovation.

As you may remember, I will be retiring from my role as Vice Chancellor in 2020.  I have developed a deep affection for Swinburne and will continue to embrace my role with energy and enthusiasm, making the most of every opportunity. 

Thank you for your continued determination and shared commitment to Swinburne and for your heart.

University is one of life’s great adventures, and you have played an important role in delivering an experience that is exciting, enriching and worthwhile for our students and others in our community.

Enjoy the festive season and holiday break. I look forward to welcoming you back in 2020 for what promises to be another great year for Swinburne.