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Governor-General to attend Otago's 150th celebrations

Tuesday 28 May 2019 10:27am

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The Governor-General of New Zealand, Her Excellency the Rt Hon Dame Patsy Reddy, GNZM, QSO

The big weekend of celebrations for the University’s 150th anniversary is just around the corner.

The Governor-General of New Zealand, Her Excellency the Rt Hon Dame Patsy Reddy, GNZM, QSO, is to attend the celebrations at Queen’s Birthday.

Dame Patsy will deliver the 150th Anniversary address at the Convocation Ceremony on the afternoon of Saturday 1 June, in the Dunedin Town Hall, and will also attend the 150th Anniversary Dinner in the evening.

At the Convocation, Honorary Degrees will be awarded to Sir Bill English, Professor Atholl Anderson, Papali’i Dr Viopapa Annandale-Atherton and Ms Brigid Inder.

Also speaking at this event will be Professor Sir David Skegg (former Vice-Chancellor of the University); the Chancellor Dr Royden Somerville QC; the Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne and James Heath, President Otago University Students’ Association.

During the ceremony there will be performances by alumni stars Kawiti Waetford and Joel Amosa, accompanied by Professor Terence Dennis.

Everyone is welcome to attend the Convocation Ceremony. There is no charge, however please be seated in the town hall by 2.15pm.

Other events on Saturday 1 June include an Anniversary Procession along George Street prior to the Convocation Ceremony and, as a birthday salute to the city which is the home of the University, Blue and Gold Fireworks in the Octagon at 6.30pm. (The procession starts from the Dental School at 1.30pm and the Convocation Ceremony begins at 2.30pm).

Sunday’s events include the Gala Concert A Celebration of the University in Words and Music at the Dunedin Town Hall at 7.30pm. The concert features music with connections to the University, from the early days up to the present. Distinguished alumni performing include Kawiti Waetford, Joel Amosa, Anna Leese and Professor Karen Grylls. (Tickets are available from Ticketmaster and all proceeds from the concert will go to EXPINKT Exercise Training Beyond Breast Cancer rehabilitation programme).

Alongside the anniversary events, five reunions are being held during the weekend, four in Dunedin and one in Wellington. They include the Otago University Students’ Association executive from 1957-1970.

“We’re very excited to welcome visiting alumni, friends, family and the residents of Dunedin to our weekend of celebrations, and to invite them to join with our current Otago staff and students as we acknowledge the extraordinary achievements of New Zealand’s first university,” says Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne.

Also opening during the weekend is the 150th University of Otago Exhibition Dare to be Wise, which will be on display at the Otago Museum. The exhibition comprises three sections – Dare focusses on bold ventures, To Be on the lived Otago experience, and Wise on knowledge and wisdom gained and shared by people at the University of Otago.

“Dare to Be Wise is bigger than Ben Hur in its complexity. It aims to give a glimpse of the 150 years of history of the University, across all of the academic and services divisions,” says exhibition curator Professor Nancy Longnecker. The exhibition will be open from Saturday 1 June and continues until 24 November.

The Garden of Earthly Delights Exhibition is also on at the Hocken Library. The exhibition comprises rare, interesting and beautiful objects while celebrating 150 years of teaching, research, exploration and collecting. Exhibition pieces were chosen from the Hocken Collections, the Otago Library’s Special Collections, the Health Sciences Library, the Embellishment Collection, the Frances Hodgkins Fellowship Trust Collection, the W. D. Trotter Anatomy Museum, and research collections in the Archaeology, Botany, and the Geology departments.

On Monday 3 June, the Cameron Shield rugby match between Knox and Selwyn Colleges will be played at the University Oval at 2pm.

The University Staff Club will be open throughout the weekend for light refreshments. Many of the weekend’s events are free of charge.

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