The Convocation of UWA Graduates held its Spring Ordinary Meeting in the Banquet Hall of the University Club of Western Australia on Friday 20th September.
The event was attended by 300 people, filling the room to capacity.Following the regular business of the organisation, the evening was enriched by a talk from Professor Peter Veth, Director of the Oceans Institute of UWA and Professor of Archaeology. Professor Veth spoke about "A Deep History of Maritime Peoples from North Western Australia".
Professor Veth is one of Australia's leading archaeologists with an international reputation for the study of maritime societies. This has included research on Barrow Island dating the oldest known Aboriginal coastal occupation through to leading the Australian Historic Shipwreck Preservation Project.
On Friday night the audience was drawn into a fascinating journey, going back 60,000 years to when human habitation existed on Barrow Island at a time when it was not an island but in fact a part of mainland WA.
His team have unearthed artefacts dated to that time, and also established that a significant change occurred 7000 years ago when sea levels rose, converting that small land mass into an island.
Professor Veth highlighted the excellent collaboration of his research team with the traditional owners of the lands on which his discoveries were made.
Prior to the meeting Professor Veth displayed extremely rare and valuable glass artefacts from the study area. Those attending the meeting were enthralled.
Earlier in the meeting Warden of Convocation Dr Doug McGhie confirmed the important role of the graduates of UWA as keepers of the corporate knowledge and history of the University, showing that the graduates and Convocation are a stable platform on which the University's success – past, present and future can build.