KUCHING – The staff of Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak Campus were recently treated to an Aussie-styled barbeque and a free-flow of sausages as part of the Australia Day celebration.
Australia Day, which falls on 26 January, marks the beginning of the white settlement of Australia.
“However, these days most Australians see it as day of celebrating what it is to be Australian. For Swinburne Sarawak, the function provides an Australian connection and atmosphere on campus,” said Associate Professor Clem Kuek, manager of the university’s Research and Consultancy Office who put together the event.
More than a 150 staff from all schools and departments of the university turned up for the barbeque which was held during lunch break. Some pitched in to help with the cooking while others prepared buns, salad and drinks.
“We are having a sausage sizzle as barbeques are quintessentially Australian and in a big barbeque, sausage in a bun is typical,” Professor Kuek said.
The whiff of burning charcoal, onions and cooking sausages filled the air as the throng of people helped themselves to the food. For many, the barbeque was a well deserved break from the routine of the day as well as a chance to catch up and mingle.
“Australia Day has the potential to bind Australians and friends from other countries, at the very least, into a common sense of gratitude for what we have and a common sense of obligation to what we owe,” said Professor Lueckenhausen, Pro Vice-Chancellor and Chief executive of Swinburne Sarawak in his Australia Day greeting to the university community.
He said that as a somewhat informal people, Australians, along with the summer heat in January has made the barbeque a must-do activity on Australia Day.
This was the first time Swinburne Sarawak celebrated Australia Day and it hopes to do so each year. Swinburne Sarawak is the only international branch campus of Swinburne, Australia.