NAAUC @ Cromwell 2018

Without a doubt NAAUC (National Association of Australian University Colleges was one of the most educational weeks of my life!!! I don’t think I have ever learnt so much in the den before! Last year’s delegates were lucky enough to win the bid, so Cromwell could host the 2018 Winter Conference. As a result, at the end of July we welcomed students from different colleges all around Australia to Cromwell. It reminded me of O-Week in the sense that there were a couple of hundred strangers sitting on the deck engaging in small talk. However very quickly we all became friends with the one commonality of living at a residential college.

Over seven days we spent our time learning about everything from fostering diversity, mental health and leadership. To begin with I thought we would be given the usual spiel and only take a few key points at most, but boy was I wrong. So often I was left in tears or with goosebumps from the things I was learning. One particular time I recall, was at the first dinner where Nina Funnell, author of The Red Zone Report, spoke and by the end every student was on their feet, eyes watering and clapping for two minutes straight.

The nights were left for networking and they were often just as educational as the workshops throughout the day. Just hearing stories from people, in the exact same boat as us, taught us what does not work and what could possibly work at Cromwell. On the final day there was a pitch in which each college would have to elaborate on a potential idea that they wish to bring back to their college. As a team we ended up winning the state forum which was very encouraging. I would like to thank the 7 other delegates who not only helped make NAAUC a blast but also challenged each other in how we thought about these issues by continuing to ask the big questions, even outside of the workshop.

Finally, I’m also extremely grateful to have been given this experience by Cromwell and would recommend that everyone apply next year for this life changing week that is NAAUC :)

Tori (Frosty) Elliot

Top Row L to R: Elly Domrow, Carli O'Shea, Charlie Oliver, James Boyce & Declan Oag
Bottom Row L to R: Lily Dargusch-Haig, Tori Elliot, Oscar Crisp