Residential colleges have a long and rich history; many being established in the mid-1900s, mostly through the generous donations of private individuals. Initially, the Head of Colleges met irregularly, until the Association was formalised through a Constitution in 1965. The Association was first known, as AHAUCHI or Association of Heads of Australian University Colleges and Halls Incorporated, until it rebranded as, University Colleges Australia Incorporated or UCA in November 2010.
In the mid-1980s political reforms merged Universities with Colleges of Advanced Education. These Colleges of Advanced Education, like Universities, had residences and their own Association. The College of Advanced Education Association merged into this Association during the 1989 Conference, significantly expanding membership.
Presidents hold the position for two years. The first recorded President was Ms Doreen Langley, Head of Women’s College, University of Sydney in 1971. Ms Langley made a great contribution to the expansion of the Women’s College and the advancement of collegiate life. Each President makes a significant contribution in time and support of members and brings something unique to the role.
1971-73 Miss Doreen Langley, Women’s College, University of Sydney
1973-75 Mr Bill F Packard, Bruce Hall, Australian National University
1975-77 Rev. Fr Brian J Fleming, Newman College, University of Melbourne
1977-79 Mr Bill F Packard, Bruce Hall, Australian National University
1979-81 Dr Michael W Blackmore, Edwards Hall, University of Newcastle
1981-83 Dr Eva G Eden, Janet Clarke Hall, University of Melbourne
1983-85 Dr Owen F Parnaby, Queen’s College, University of Melbourne
1985-87 Dr Michael W Blackmore, Edwards Hall, University of Newcastle
1987-89 Dr Edwina Ridgway, Duval College, University of New England
1989-91 Mr William Kelly, St Paul’s College, James Cook University
1991-93 Mr Bob Fels, International House, University of Melbourne
1993-95 Mr Angus Edmonds, Emmanuel College, University of Qld
1995-97 Mrs Jill Spilsbury, Mary White College, University of New England
1997-99 Mr Brian Abbey, Mary White College, University of New England
1999-01 Ms Robyn Wilkes, Campus East, University of Wollongong
2001-03 Dr Lewis Rushbrook, Burgmann College, Australian National University
2003-05 Prof. Hugh Collins, Ormond College, University of Melbourne
2005-07 Mr Greg Eddy, King’s College, University of Queensland
2007-08 Mrs Yvonne Rate, Women’s College, University of Sydney
2009-10 Ms Fiona Crowe, St Catherine’s College, University of Western Australia
2010-12 Mrs Barbara Green, St Hilda’s College, University of Melbourne
2012-2014 Adjunct Prof. Iyla Davies, The Women’s College, Queensland University
2014-2016 Dr Ian Walker, Toad Hall, Australian National University
2016-2018 Ms Rose Alwyn, St Mark’s College, The Universities of Adelaide & South Australia
2018-2021 Mrs Barbara Green AM, Honorary Life Member
2021 – current Mr Wayne Erickson, St Andrew’s College within The University of Sydney
Members interaction and professional development took place mainly through conferences.
Prior to incorporation a select group of Heads of Colleges met irregularly hosted by the following Universities:
1948 – University of Melbourne
1957 – University of Queensland
1959 – University of Sydney
1962 – University of Tasmania at Hobart
1964 – University of Western Australia
After the UCA was formed, members met on a regular basis. National Executive Meetings were held every two years and a smaller local conferences were held yearly. These conferences provided a valuable opportunities for members to network, communicate face-to-face, and further develop their careers.
Biennial Conferences & Local Representative Meetings/National Executive Meetings: