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Announcing the Harriet Nixon Scholarship and the 2023 Academic Award recipients

Burgmann Principal Alex McKenzie announced the 2023 Academic Award recipients at our 2024 Commencement Dinner, and our intention to establish The Harriet Nixon Scholarship for regional, rural and remote students.

The 2023 College Medallist and Academic Awards winners recognised

On 7 March 2024, Burgmann residents, staff, alumni and friends gathered at the National Arboretum in Canberra to celebrate Burgmann College's annual Commencement Dinner and Academic Awards ceremony, in recognition of Burgmann residents who attained high academic marks in the previous academic year.

Phoebe Grosser was named the 2023 College Medallist, Burgmann College's highest academic award, for her outstanding academic marks of 7.0, and her exemplary commitment to fostering the Burgmann community.

Over 50 students were recognised for their high academic achievements within the previous school year. See the full list of Academic Awards recipients here.

See more photos from the event on our website Gallery - 2024 Commencement Dinner.

Announcing The Harriet Nixon Scholarship for regional, rural and remote ANU students

Principal McKenzie announced the that the College's 2024 Annual Appeal would work to establish The Harriet Nixon Scholarship for regional, rural and remote ANU students.

During Commencement Dinner, Principal McKenzie shared how a brief, chance encounter with the vibrant Harriet forever altered the course of his life:

'When I was in Year 10, I happened to board an airplane and had the pleasure of sitting next to a bright, bubbly and friendly person who was a stranger to me. I suddenly made a friendship with this wonderful person called Harriet. We kept in touch on Facebook, and when I was looking at which College I should come to at the ANU, it was Harriet who told me to come to Burgmann. She told me how special the community was—and she was right.'

In her application letter to Burgmann, Harriet wrote:

'I have grown up with an important sense of community service, where giving to others establishes a stronger community. I would like to continue giving to people and communities through university, and I feel that Burgmann has an environment where this goal can be achieved.'

Over the years, Residential Fellow Professor Asmi Wood and Director of Advancement Amelia Zaraftis, had conversations about establishing a scholarship in Harriet’s name. These discussions have culminated in our Annual Appeal to establish The Harriet Nixon Scholarship, honouring Harriet's belief in Burgmann College's altruistic values of selfless giving and strengthening community.

Principal McKenzie called upon the Burgmann community to for support to establish this scholarship, while expressing gratitude for the contributions that have already been made.

'I ask the Burgmann community for their support in promoting this worthy cause, and I’m confident that we will meet our target, as we are only launching this initiative now and $16,000 has already been donated.'


To read more about the extraordinary legacy of Harriet Nixon we invite you to read our Remembering Harriet page.

If you're moved to honour Harriet's legacy and empower more regional, rural and remote students to pursue their studies at the ANU, please use our online donation form to make a donation toward the establishment of The Harriet Nixon Scholarship Fund.

If you have any questions, concerns, or need more information, please contact Burgmann College's Director of Advancement, Amelia Zaraftis.

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Phoebe Grosser, 2023 College Medallist
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Principal McKenzie announced The Harriet Nixon Scholarship for regional and rural students.
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(L-R) Ralph Nixon, father of Harriet Nixon; Amelia Zaraftis, Director of Advancement; Fiona Nixon, Burgmann volunteer and mother of Harriet Nixon, and Principal Alex McKenzie.
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Andrew Probyn, Nine Network's national affairs editor and guest speaker, was gifted a custom Burgmann jumper.
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The views from the Arboretum were the perfect backdrop for the event.
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2024 BRA President Anaina Langrana.
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