Mr Gray Connolly addresses students at Formal Hall

Mr Gray Connolly addresses students at Formal Hall
Mr Gray Connolly addresses students at Formal Hall
26 May 2023

On Thursday the 25th of May, students and staff gathered for Formal Hall.

Our guest speaker for the evening was Gray Connolly, a Sydney-based barrister and public commentator with expertise in public law and commercial law practice, including constitutional law, energy and resources law and admiral/shipping law.

In his Formal Hall address, Mr Connolly provided a brief history of the Australian Constitution and shared a balanced account of the implications that may arise from constitutional amendments such as the proposed Voice to Parliament. In particular, he encouraged the students to give due consideration to how they will vote in the upcoming referendum and to consider the role they might play in Australian media, law and politics in the future.

"A number of you may be casting your first vote or your second vote when it comes to the referendum and that will be your matter as a young citizen to decide how you cast that vote," said Mr Connolly. "All I would say is cast an informed vote with a clear conscience."

"I think one thing I would impress upon you - because you are all very intelligent young people, you’re all studying the classics, philosophy, rhetoric, argument - a number of you will go into [law and politics] and my one hope is that if you do, or if you go into media or something like that, please, we need desperately to improve the level of not just constitutional literacy but literacy about how things work for real in our society."

An audio recording of Mr Connolly's address is available via this link.

A highlight of the evening was the opportunity to dine in the college's new Grand Hall. Students and staff were treated to an exclusive 'sneak peek' of this space, with completion of the Academic Centre expected shortly. The Grand Hall takes up one-quarter of the floor plan of the new Academic Centre and provides a much needed space for college events and gatherings. Click here to learn more about how you can support this project. 

During Formal Hall, students were also delighted to learn of the theme for the upcoming Annual Campion Ball. Anita Donaldson, head of the Ball Planning Committee, encouraged students to don their finest regal attire in line with this year's ball theme - A Regal Affair - while Campion College Student Association President, Julian Vieira, revealed a mood board for the ball and thanked everyone involved with the planning for their dedication to event so far.

See below for photos from the evening.