Afternoon Tea for the Presentation of His Excellency’s Student Transcripts to The University of Queensland
Ladies and gentlemen, it is very gracious of you all to be here this afternoon – Chancellor, Vice-Chancellor, Professor Pearn, and I know Kaye particularly would wish me to acknowledge the University Librarian, the Librarians and the Fryer Librarians; and from the Historical Society, Dean Prangley and Ruth Kerr.
I centrally wanted today to thank the University for the very warm and generous hospitality provided to me during my visit to the St Lucia campus in July. What a remarkable, State-defining University we are!
I hope you agree with me that every invitation to Government House is intrinsically special. But I do feel I am imposing on you somewhat today in relation to the second part of today’s occasion. To suggest that one’s university examination papers should be singled out on the public record smacks of – what? – perhaps a degree of self-importance?; I hope not, but probably a degree of self-indulgence.
It did however occur to me that these are ‘time-pieces’ worth preserving. And I must thank my Mother for having for having kept them.
Now at the age of 68, I cannot believe that when 17 and 18 I apparently had the wisdom to answer such difficult questions. And the scribblings were in the 10 minutes perusal period, when we were allowed to make notes to inform the resultant essays!
It would be interesting to ally the papers with the results! I have been very open about this, including disclosing my ‘P minus’ in Commercial Law, and through sheer embarrassment, I will say no more about that, beyond remarking on the irony that it became my largest practice area. Maybe I should have warned my clients – but as Kaye knows, I was astute to maintain fulsome indemnity insurance.
Kaye and I share a debt to UQ, as do all our three children – it is a wonderful institution which I will always respect, and whose heritage I am very pleased in this small way to acknowledge.