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Residents' families welcomed to Burgmann during Family Weekend 2024

Burgmann College welcomed residents’ families to our campus for Family Weekend 2024 for a memorable 3-day event. Hosted by the Burgmann Residents Association (BRA) Vice Presidents Oscar McAuliffe and Joshua Borland, the weekend was filled with exciting activities and bonding moments for families and our residents.

The event kicked off Friday 3 May with Trivia Night at the College’s beloved bar, Le Chat Noir. Families had an opportunity to meet, dine and drink together, and enjoy a friendly trivia competition to settle in for their weekend stay.

Lawn games, drinks and delicious food platters were enjoyed by all Saturday afternoon at The RUC – Turner, a local bowling green and sports bar.

That evening, residents and their families were invited to QT Canberra for the Family Weekend Gala. Guests were served a three-course menu, bid on items and experiences during the annual Charities Auction, and enjoyed speeches from BRA President Anaina Langrana and her mother, Dilbur Langrana.

See photos from the 2024 Family Weekend Gala on our website.

‘To be able to celebrate our College, our friends and our families over the course of a weekend is something truly special that calls for nothing less than immense gratitude', said Anaina. She thanked the event organisers, the families who travelled to support their loved ones, and her fellow residents and friends.

‘I know I sound like a broken record every time I express these sentiments, but thank you for embracing me not only into this College, but also into this country with such warmth and openness. It was incredibly hard leaving India, but you welcoming me with open arms not only made me feel at home, but also made me feel comfortable enough to grow, learn and thrive in this vibrant environment.

‘And last, but certainly not least, and arguably the biggest expression of gratitude that I have had to give thus far: To my wonderful family who flew all the way from India to come celebrate this weekend with me. I still tear up every single time you drop me off at the airport, and wave at you until the last possible moment, turning back again and again to see if you’re waving at me too—and you always are,’ Anaina concluded before inviting her mother up onto the stage.

After some lighthearted teasing about how she knew her bright, spirited daughter was destined for a presidential role someday, Dilbur Langrana also expressed her thanks to Burgmann College for opening our arms to their family.

‘On a more serious note, this is our first time in Australia, and obviously at ANU and at Burgmann. You cannot begin to imagine the roller coaster of emotions that we are experiencing and for obvious reasons: We were born, brought up, and live in Mumbai', she said. 'Whilst we love every second of living there, I’m sure you don’t doubt that this is a completely different and overwhelming environment. I say that in a good and positive way.

‘In Anaina’s words, and I quote, “I’m having the time of my life”. It’s a testament to your country, this College, and the people within it.'

Families were also introduced to Fiona, Ralph and Alicia Nixon, the family of Harriet Nixon, as they launched the College's annual appeal and encouraged Burgmann families to consider donating to The Harriet Nixon Scholarship for rural, regional and remote Burgmann residents, in memory of their daughter.

We are honoured to share Harriet’s story in loving remembrance, and to highlight her inspirational legacy as a treasured friend and a valued member of the Burgmann College community.

‘As a family from regional NSW, we witnessed first-hand the transformative power of education and the nurturing environments that Burgmann College and the ANU provided to our cherished daughter Harriet,’ said Fiona. ‘Seeing her flourish, surrounded by extraordinary opportunities for personal growth, dedicated to community service, and developing lifelong friendships in a caring environment has inspired us deeply. Our wish is to extend that same valued support to other students through this scholarship.’

Burgmann College set a goal to raise $6,000 for The Harriet Nixon Scholarship Appeal during Family Weekend, with the generous support of two matched funding donors. We are so grateful to the families who donated, as $12,000 was raised for the Harriet Nixon Scholarship over the Family Weekend.

After dessert, families and residents danced the night away in the ballroom to music from Burgmann’s Big Night Out Band, who won 1st place at this year’s ANU Interhall Arts Committee’s Big Night Out competition.

The following morning, families were treated to the hallowed Sunday morning Burgmann tradition of Luigi’s. Started by former Principal Lewis (Luigi) Rushbrook, every Sunday morning, residents and staff are invited for scones with jam and cream, tea and coffee hosted by the Principal, Dean, or College Officer in their lodgings or out in the open air.

A ‘Grand Luigi’s’ was hosted by the Burgmann Residents Association, alongside a pre-loved book sale hosted by the representatives of the Greens Committee. Families were encouraged to purchase Burgmann merchandise, to commemorate their visit to Burgmann College.

We thank all of the friends and family who travelled to be with their student for this special event, and once again thank BRA Vice Presidents Oscar McAuliffe and Joshua Borland and all others who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to make this a spectacular event for our residents and their families.

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BRA Vice Presidents Joshua Borlund (L) and Oscar McAuliffe (R)
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BRA President Anaina Langrana
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Dilbur Langrana
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Fiona Nixon (L) and Alicia Nixon (centre) with Director of Advancement Amelia Zaraftis (R)
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