Installation Ceremony for the 4th Chancellor of Central Queensland University
Members of Parliament; Mayors; CQ University Outgoing Chancellor, Mr John Abbott AM and Chancellor Elect, Mr Graeme Innes AM; Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Klomp; University Council Members; leadership team and staff; Chancellors of James Cook University and the
University of Southern Queensland; graduates; your family and friends; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I begin by thanking the Darumbal people for welcoming me today and acknowledge them as the traditional custodians of the lands around Rockhampton, and I pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging. I extend that respect to all First Nations people here today.
I am truly honoured to have been asked to participate in this significant occasion in the life of CQ University.
The robing ceremony we have just witnessed reflects the enormous responsibility and privilege that comes with the distinguished position of Chancellor of the University.
As the incoming Chancellor, Mr Graeme Innes AM has been entrusted to direct and guide CQ University, and its many campuses, on a path that will ensure ongoing success for the institution, its staff, and the students who choose to enroll in this forward-thinking, world-class, educational facility.
As the University’s 4th Chancellor, Graeme will continue to build on the many achievements of his predecessors, and I take this opportunity to acknowledge the valuable contribution they have each made.
Under their combined tenure, CQ University has grown to become one of the largest regional universities in Australia. As a pioneer of online learning and a champion of inclusivity, the University has positioned itself to welcome students from all walks of life, no matter where they live.
I pay particular homage to outgoing Chancellor Mr John Abbott AM for his many years of outstanding commitment to CQ University, and the many notable achievements of the University under his stewardship.
I would also like to take a moment to congratulate today’s graduates. Your dedication and hard work have prepared you for a brilliant future. I thank the families and friends who have supported you. We are all so very proud of what you have achieved.
In Queensland, we look to our universities to help us solve the many complex and pressing issues that face our world. CQ University’s inclusive approach has enabled greater access and participation across all faculties. This has resulted in many more diverse, creative and innovative minds coming together to work, think and discover.
It is clear to me this university will flourish under Graeme’s leadership, for he brings with him an extraordinary range of experiences, encompassing his eminence as a lawyer, author and company director.
In addition to this expertise, Graeme is a highly respected human rights advocate, and champion of rights and access for people living with disability, which will no doubt see him continue to build on CQ University’s admirable social change agenda.
I commend the University on the choice of their incoming Chancellor and feel assured that CQ University will continue to lead the way in actively bringing about meaningful, positive and lasting change, to the betterment of our wonderful State.
Chancellor, on behalf of all Queenslanders, I congratulate you on today’s installation and I wish you every success.