Notre Dame graduates set to lead, contribute and prosper

Dr Ashley Cripps was conferred a PhD in Health Sciences at Notre Dame’s Graduation Ceremony.
Pictured with Dr Kate Howell, HDR Education Coordinator.
Hannah Kolbusz delivers the Farewell Address on behalf of her graduating cohort.

Tuesday 3 January 2017

The gifts, talents and hopes of more than 1000 Notre Dame graduates were celebrated at the University’s Graduation Mass and Ceremonies in Perth and Fremantle (12 – 14 December 2016).

The Notre Dame community of family, friends, benefactors, donors, academic and departmental staff, and more came together to celebrate the achievements of its graduates and the beginning of their journey as people of inspiration and hope in their communities.

Medicine graduate Pia Jelinek reads
the Prayers of the Faithful
at the Graduation Mass.

The highest achieving graduates delivered the Farewell Addresses at each of the four ceremonies – Tess Bestall (Bachelor of Nursing), Samantha Doughty (Bachelor of Behavioural Science – Major: English Literature), Hannah Kolbusz (Bachelor of Education – Early Childhood & Care: 0-8 years), and Nicole Koch (Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Honours)).

Additionally, it was a momentous occasion for seven graduates who were conferred higher degrees by research – Dr Sally Clark (Doctor of Philosophy – Nursing); Dr Ashley Cripps (Doctor of Philosophy – Health Sciences); Dr Sushmita Datta Roy (Doctor of Education); Dr Carolyn Keane (Doctor of Nursing); Laura Bava (Master of Arts – Arts & Sciences); Patrick Barton (Master of Philosophy – Arts & Sciences); and Megan Van Selm (Master of Philosophy – Physiotherapy).

Notre Dame also conferred a Doctor of Laws to The Honourable Neville Owen for his tireless and faithful commitment to the legal profession, most notably as the Senior Judge of the Court of Appeal of the WA Supreme Court. Justice Owen is a former Chancellor of the University, with the historic courthouse on the Fremantle Campus named in his honour.

Celebrations commenced with the annual Graduation Mass on Monday 12 December 2016, at a capacity St Mary’s Cathedral in Perth. More than 1100 guests attended the special ceremony where graduates were presented with their graduation crosses – a traditional icon of the University and a commemorative symbol of a student’s time at Notre Dame.

During his Homily, Archbishop of Perth, the Most Reverend Timothy Costelloe SDB, called on Notre Dame’s graduates to live out the Gospel values in their personal and professional lives in being people for others.

“The values that underpin the University of Notre Dame will provide you who are graduating with such solid foundations, if you are open to receive them. The extent to which you carry those values with you into the future will be the measure of how successful Notre Dame has been as a truly Catholic university,” Archbishop Costelloe said.

“It will also be the measure of the integrity of the life you are building for yourselves and those you love.

“My prayer for you all is that your time at Notre Dame has prepared you to rise to this challenge with enthusiasm, with determination and with faith.”

In 2016, the University held a total of nine Graduation Ceremonies – four in December and two in July on the Fremantle Campus; one in August on the Broome Campus; and two ceremonies at the Sydney Town Hall in April – and farewelled more than 2000 students nationally.

“We believe that the best education we can provide any person is one which encompasses specialised expertise, with the capacity to reflect on broader perspectives, including the ethical and social dimensions of their work, research, decision-making and promoting the common good,” Professor Celia Hammond, Notre Dame’s Vice Chancellor, said in her address to graduates.

“As you leave Notre Dame today, we hope and pray that you will continue to develop your gifts, skills and talents and use them to serve the common good; that you will be confident in your skills and ability, but humble in dealing with others; that you have open and compassionate hearts; and that you love your neighbour as yourself and live by the golden rule: ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you’.”


Leigh Dawson: Tel (08) 9433 0569; Mob 0405 441 093;