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Alumni connect July

15 July 2022

The monthly column from our Alumni Engagement Manager.

On Monday, we sent out the 2022 Alumni Survey and so many of you have already responded. Thanks to all of you who have taken the time to fill it out. And to those still keen to be part of the action, you have until Monday 25 July – it will only take you about 15 minutes. Make sure your story forms part of the bigger picture as we explore the collective impact of our programs over the last 30 years! 

And once you’re done (yay for you!) we’d love you to reach out to someone in your cohort and encourage them to complete it as well. 

We also offered a table at Gala for the first eight respondents from the same cohort! We haven’t quite got a winner there yet – but it’s close! Stay tuned.

I had the pleasure of meeting with alumni in both Darwin and Wagga recently.

I was lucky enough to meet with ARLP 29 participants in Darwin before they headed off on their first session. We reached out to local Darwin alumni to join us all for a dinner at the Darwin Sail Club.  The location, the sunset and the full moon rising (at the same time) were almost too breathtaking to fully absorb. A big thank you to Donna Digby, Peter Styles, Brooke Rankmore, Clair O’Brien, Alister Trier and Nigel Scullion for joining us and sharing some of your thoughts and learnings with our eager bunch of participants. 

I also met with Wagga based alumni for a dinner in late June. It was a small crowd, but it was a lovely evening.  We even had an attendee from the very first cohort ARLP 1 – Joe Fealy. It’s amazing to hear that he’s still in touch with some of his fellow participants all these years later. Thanks also to Yvette Mckenzie, Lisa Anderson and Stephen Bett who all braved the cold Wagga weather to attend. 

For me, this dinner re-enforced the fact that connecting alumni who are geographically close to each other is obviously advantageous. It helps on a networking front by establishing local connections, which can only be beneficial for the betterment of regional communities. But one of the discussions we had at the dinner was how to better connect alumni from similar industries – regardless of geography. And this is something I’d like to be more proactive about and we will ensure it forms an important part of the new platform we are moving towards. More details to come on this over the coming months. 

Lisa Anderson, and recent ARLP C27 graduate, not only attended the dinner but also joined me as I met with some of the local AgriFutures team in Wagga – Sheridan Ingold and Abby O’Callaghan. Lisa is no stranger to AgriFutures – they sponsored her placement on ARLP, and she is also the chair of their Pasture Seeds Advisory Panel. And AgriFutures are such huge supporters of the ARLF – not only by kicking starting us as an organisation 30 years ago and sponsoring over 70 people to undertake an ARLF program since that time but are also our major sponsorship partner for our 30th Birthday celebrations this year.

Now – a reminder that our 30th Birthday Gala dinner will be held in Canberra on Wednesday 26 October. Tickets go on sale towards the end of next week. There’s an early bird sale so if you’re keen to come – book sooner rather than later. 

And – as a special addition to our 30th birthday celebrations this year, we are excited to be offering a program specifically targeting ARLF alumni. For those who are seeking to re-connect, take stock, draw on their own wisdom and that of others through reflection and immersive activity, come and join a 3.5-day program in late October from Thursday 27 October to Sunday 30 October. The program will start the day after the gala. So – the perfect chance for you to celebrate with us at the gala – and then take some time to re-connect, be challenged and reflect for a few days after. 

The program will be held in Canberra at Cuppacumbalong and will be hosted by ARLF Associates Karim Haddad and Ali Wass.

More details and a link to register your interest and pay a deposit (total program cost will be $2,400 (incl. GST) will become available in conjunction with 30th Birthday Gala ticket sales. In the meantime, email me with questions. I’d love to hear your thoughts, or any questions you have about this new program offering.  

Until next month,

Julia Strang

Alumni Engagement Manager