Dozens of federal parliamentarians and political advisers joined senior University staff last week at the launch of ACU's inaugural parliamentary friendship group at Parliament House in Canberra.
The event was co-hosted by Liberal MP Trent Zimmerman and Labor MP Andrew Leigh, who represent the electorates in which ACU’s North Sydney and Canberra campuses are based, and was attended by Education Minister Simon Birmingham.
In their remarks, the co-convenors emphasised ACU’s national reach, its commitment to social causes and the role it plays in its local communities. These sentiments were echoed by Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Greg Craven, described by Mr Zimmerman as Australia’s “celebrity vice-chancellor”.
Following the launch, Professor Craven hosted an informal dinner for a number of parliamentarians, including Shadow Assistant Minister for Universities, Terri Butler MP, and former ACU Director of Government, Policy and Strategy, Julian Leeser MP.
The Parliamentary Friends of ACU group will strengthen the University’s engagement with federal policy makers, build awareness of and affiliation with ACU among parliamentarians and contribute to public policy debates on select topics. Later this year, the parliamentary friendship group will host a discussion at Parliament House on initial teacher education and teacher quality, highlighting ACU’s expertise in this area.