From the President:

  • UCA Forum: Call for Presentations - Reminder
  • Welcome to our new members
  • Membership Survey - share your thoughts
Membership Matters
  • The Alcohol Harm Minimisation Practices of UCA Member Colleges - e-publication now online
  • Student Accommodation Association Industry Lunch, NSW - Report
  • UCA Graduate Residences Network - Report
  • APSAA Awards: Congratulations to UCA Members
  • St Catherine's to open at Curtin University
  • UCA Mentoring & Professional Peer Supervision
  • Funding Available for Women's Leadership Development
  • Selected Readings
From the President

UCA Forum: Creating Value through the Collegiate Way
Call for Presentations extended to Friday 5 July
We look forward to welcoming you to our Forum at The Union, University & Schools Club, Sydney from  2 to 4 October 2019 and thank you to those who have submitted for the several 15 and 30 minute presentation timeslots.  So that we can hear from more members and should you have missed the opportunity to submit, we have extended our period for registrations of interest to Friday 5 July.
Please contact Bill Peirson ( or Joanna Rosewell ( ASAP and by Friday 5 July to register your interest.

Welcome to New Members
We warmly welcome new members and associate members:
  • Mrs Florence Kearney (Flo), Head of College & CEO, The Women's College UQ
  • Mrs Kelly Alford, Principal, Durack College, Brisbane
  • Mr James Hardiman, Dean of Basser College (The Kensington Colleges), UNSW
  • Rev. Dr Samuel Freney, Dean of Residents, Robert Menzies College, Macquarie University
  • Ms Rebecca Coleman, Deputy Head, Burton & Garran Hall, ANU
UCA Member Survey: share your thoughts
UCA’s executive committee understands and is aware of  the challenges and benefits of life in residential communities.  For UCA to continue to provide value to members and meet expectations, the Committee has prioritised the strategic direction of the future of the Association.  We want to hear from you about how best we can support our members and what the future looks like for UCA.

Thank you to those members who have already completed our Survey which was emailed to you on 27 June. We look forward to hearing from all of our members and note that all responses will remain anonymous.  Please complete the survey by no later than Friday 5 July.  Your answers will assist us in the work we are currently doing and that we will bring to the membership at our Sydney Forum, 2-4 October, 2019.

Should you have any questions about the Survey or would like to make a comment, please contact me at email: or phone: 0403 261 025.  We look forward to your continued support and membership and presenting our Forum agenda in the coming weeks.
Barbara Green
Membership Matters
The Alcohol Harm Minimisation Practices of UCA Member Colleges
- e-publication now online

The purpose of this publication by UCA is to celebrate, acknowledge and promote to others the wide range of interventions, and programmatic responses being carried out in residential colleges by UCA members with the aim of preventing and minimising harm to students from excessive alcohol consumption.  Read the publication here

Student Accommodation Association NSW Industry Lunch, 19 June 2019
UCA Committee Members Wayne Erickson and Bill Peirson attended the NSW Industry Lunch of the Student Accommodation Association (SAA) on behalf of UCA.  Held at Parliament House, the keynote address was by Mr. Gary White, the Chief Planner of New South Wales.  The principal issue for discussion was the difficulties in obtaining approvals for new student accommodation. Mr White presented approaches that may assist developers of new student accommodation.  There was brief broader discussion of the future directions of SAA, including its stated role in accrediting student accommodation.
UCA is continuing its discussions with SAA regarding our present initiatives with regard to professionalization of university colleges. We will be working with SAA to ensure Residential Colleges are properly represented in any standards and accreditation strategies developed by SAA for the broader student accommodation industry.
UCA Graduate Residences Network - Report
Some 18 or so Heads and Deputies of postgraduate residences/residences with postgraduate students gathered at University House ANU on 12 & 13 June last to share ideas, issues and initiatives and to form a UCA Graduate Residences Network. Nearly every capital city was represented. They were joined in discussion by the UCA President, Mrs Barbara Green; ANU Acting DVC (Academic), Professor Grady Venville; the ANU Acting Dean of Higher Degrees by Research, Associate Professor Anne Evans (who is also the Deputy Master of University House); the Deputy Registrar, Student Life (Accommodation Services), Mr Scott Walker; the Vice-President of the ANU Postgraduate & Research Students’ Association, Mr Utsav Gupta; some Coordinators and Senior Residents from Toad Hall and University House & Graduate House; the President of NAAUC, Mr Jonty Boshier, and Secretary, Ms Charlotte Maybery-Reupert; and … the new Ambassador of Costa Rica to Australia and New Zealand, HE Mr Amando Vargas-Araya, who was staying at University House. The group was convened by former UCA President and Head of Toad Hall, Dr Ian Walker, and hosted by the Master of University House, Professor Peter Kanowski, who is also Australian Secretary of the Rhodes Scholarships. The Principal of Burgmann College, Ms Sally Renouf, hosted a lunch at the College, and a smaller group then toured the new Wright and Bruce Halls with the Head of Wright Hall, Mr Samitha Ramanayake, and the Acting Head of Bruce Hall, Mrs Rowena Wedd. 

Much conversation centred around the particular academic and wellbeing needs of postgraduate students, many of whom are from overseas, as well as the special role that postgraduate students can play in mentoring and role modelling for undergraduate residents. With a growing focus on postgraduate residence across Australia and beyond, the Network is keen to share information and resources and to meet at least once each year, as well as to have some particular session associated with the annual UCA Forum.
Part of the group on the top floor area of Wright Hall on a chilly Canberra afternoon!
Congratulations to UCA Members:
A warm congratulations to the following UCA  members who took out APSAA Excellence Awards at their recent conference:
  • Excellence in Student Experience - Institution over 500 beds:  University Hall, UWA - for the positive student outcomes created by their rapidly growing Professional Development program which saw more than 130 students engage in six programs.  This program is part of their pastoral care and student support offering, delivering enrichment programs which allow students to have a rounded and vibrant experience whilst living and studying on campus.
  • Excellence in Student Experience - Institution under 500 beds: Dunmore Lang College, Macquarie University – for the successful implementation of a community-based, bicultural Indigenous Student Support programme comprising elder-in-residence, workshops and language recovery work as well as cultural outreach to non-Aboriginal students including the implementation of bilingual signage and knowledge exchange opportunities.
  • Excellence in Facilities Development or Management - Institution under 500 beds: Robert Menzies College - for successfully addressing a need for increased spaces for communal and group study.  Students are increasingly reporting a need to have distance between study space and sleeping space, and a desire to have other spaces to conduct their work. The benefits of this are an increase in student success in their studies, a strengthening of connectedness, and a decrease in mental health conditions which are exacerbated by isolation.
St Catherine's College to open at Curtin University: As part of a $300 development at Curtin University, St Catherine's College has been chosen to open an innovative residential accommodation facility that builds on the traditions of the Oxford & Cambridge style colleges and provides its suite of programs & services to 400 Curtin students from around the world.  Whilst other accommodation packages will provide accommodation and meals, what will distinguish St Catherine's offering is the intensive academic programs and wellness programs which ensure students make friends, have a balanced approach to life and are successful, not only at university but into employment.
UCA Mentoring & Professional Peer Supervision
UCA has administered a mentoring program for a number of years which has traditionally involved a newly appointed, less experienced Head learning and gaining new perspectives from a more experienced member of UCA.  However, there is no reason why this program cannot be extended to include a professional peer to peer support network whereby Heads of Colleges & Halls doing similar work or with similar experiences could provide advice and one another and discuss, for example, how to manage work issues, challenges, business strategies etc.  Should you wish to participate in such a program, please register your interest with Deborah Pugh at Email: or phone: O434 400 653
Funding has just been released to support the development of female leaders across Australia’s education sector.  The initiative is providing women with grants of between $3,000 and $7,000 to enable participation in one of three programs that cover such things as Presence and Presentation Skills, Leading Innovation and Change, and Emotional Intelligence and Conflict.

The scholarship funding is provided with the specific intent of providing powerful and effective development opportunities for education sector women.

Expressions of Interest
Find out more and register your interest by completing the Expression of Interest form here prior to 13th September:

Selected Readings: 

  • How different types of college dormitories can affect academic performance  Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice, June 21, 2019. A new study found that slick, apartment-style housing might be aesthetically pleasing but could lower students' academic performance.   Read more here
  • Commuters vs. Residents: The Effects of Living Arrangement & Student Engagement on Academic Performance, Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory & Practice  This study focuses on the relationship between living arrangement (residential vs. commuter) and the academic performance of first year undergraduate full time students.  Their results suggest the amount of time and energy students invest in their university experience relates to their academic success, regardless of living arrangement.  Read more here
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