On Thursday 9 November, the Mitchell Institute and the Australian Industry Group’s Centre for Education and Training welcomed over 100 guests to celebrate the release of Rethinking Tertiary Education: Building on the Work of Peter Noonan at Victoria University’s City Tower.
Rethinking Tertiary Education brings together leading experts to address the divide between vocational education and higher education in Australia, providing a roadmap for the reform agenda needed to achieve a more harmonised tertiary education system.
The central figure in the development of this policy agenda, and on whose life’s work this book has been built, is Peter Noonan. A professor of Tertiary Education at Victoria University, he sadly passed away in 2022 after forty years as a leading tertiary education policy thinker and adviser to both sides of government.
Officially launching the book, the Honourable Brendan O’Connor, Minister for Skills and Training, spoke of the immense contributions Peter Noonan made to tertiary education in Australia over the course of his life, noting that his legacy will continue to make a meaningful impact now and into the future.
Guests also heard from Victoria University’s Vice-Chancellor Professor Adam Shoemaker, and Deputy Vice-Chancellor Lisa Line, who shared their congratulations and emphasised the timeliness of the books release ahead of the Universities Accord. The Australian Industry Group’s Chief Executive, Innes Willox gave his thanks and provided an industry perspective, while the books co-editor’s Professor Peter Dawkins and Megan Lilly spoke of how the book came to be and what it hopes to achieve.
Mitchell Institute Director, Associate Professor Peter Hurley also welcomed Peter Noonan’s wife Marion to share a few words on behalf of the Noonan family, which she did with great warmth, admiration, and heartfelt thanks.
Following the formalities, the books authors, editors and supporters took the time to celebrate over drinks and nibbles, share stories about their time with Peter Noonan, and engage in conversations about tertiary education policy in Australia.
These conversations will continue to be facilitated over the coming weeks and months as we keep working towards building the harmonised tertiary education system that Peter Noonan dedicated his career to- one that is equitable, accessible, and fit for Australia’s needs.
Coming up on Monday 20 November, the Mitchell Institute and the Australian Industry Group Centre for Education and Training are hosting a 'Rethinking Tertiary Education' webinar. This will be the first in a program of webinars that dive into the book and its themes.
Rethinking Tertiary Education: Building on the Work of Peter Noonan is out now, available in all good bookstores and online.