On Sunday, July 1, we celebrate an important milestone in Swinburne's history - the 20th anniversary of our proclamation as a university.
In 1992, Swinburne Institute of Technology became Swinburne University of Technology. I am proud to acknowledge more than 200 staff members who have been with Swinburne for those 20 years. I thank you for your commitment and dedication, which has endured times of challenge, change, strength and success.
I'd like to reflect for a moment on 1992. The High Court of Australia decided on the Mabo case, a landmark decision recognising native title. The first Big Day Out was held, headlined by Nirvana. It's hard for us to imagine now, but the Internet was not available to the general public in 1992. The information superhighway was yet to arrive on our desks, let alone on our phones.
During the past 20 years, we have seen an explosion in information technology that has revolutionised the way we work, socialise, communicate, teach and learn. We have moved into providing high quality online and digitally-enhanced learning for our students.
But we should remember Swinburne has undergone many transformations - not just in technology - in our 104 year history. We have grown from being a local provider of technical education into a world-class university offering high quality tertiary education and producing high-impact research in our areas of strength. We have added an international dimension to our teaching and research mission through the establishment of our campus in Sarawak, Malaysia.
While technology has changed during the past two decades, there are unique Swinburne qualities that have endured. Our strong links with industry, our student-focussed approach, our adoption of new educational technologies and our innovative research have all stood the test of time.
What will the next 20 years bring? There is no doubt we are facing another challenging chapter in Swinburne's history with many difficult decisions ahead. But if the past has shown us anything, it is that we will embrace change, adapt, evolve and ultimately thrive.
We will continue to lead the way in science, technology and innovation. We will continue to put our students at the heart of everything we do. We will continue to produce industry-ready, world-class graduates. We will continue to transform society with research of national and international significance.
Thank you to each and every Swinburne staff member for your contributions to this transformational university during the past 20 years.
Professor Linda Kristjanson