Alan Scarlett Retires

After nearly 27 years, Alan Scarlett has retired from Federation University at Churchill, as Executive Officer/Campus Manager.
The University arranged a farewell event and many colleagues, past and present as well as community members gladly accepted the invitation to attend on December 19 in the University bistro. It was a happy time with many positive things said about Alan by DVC Darren Holland and Vice Chancellor Helen Bartlett. Alan himself had a wonderful speech prepared which gave everyone a laugh as he handed over the responsibility of many important, historic and sentimental things to various staff members.
Alan has been the ‘go to person’ for anything and everything to do with the University and, is very well known in our community for his ever present attendance at community functions like Churchill Festival, ANZAC Day, Churchill and District Community Association member, Hub Board and numerous other committees and involvements as the University representative.
Alan began his time at Churchill in 1991 when it was the Monash University College Gippsland. He has seen the transition to a full campus of Monash and now Federation University.
His initial job was in the Audio Visual department which he counts as one of his highlights. During this period he and his team made live recordings of graduations, the 50th anniversary of the end of World War 2, as well interesting productions of surgical operations and archaeology etc.
He also worked with many academics to produce material they could use in their courses.
He then moved to become Executive Officer/Campus Manager to PVC Brian Mackenzie at Monash and finally Federation University.
Other highlights include helping to establish a scholarship program which ran between 2001 and 2012, helping to re-establish the Aboriginal Liaison Officer position, various building projects, notably the Community Hub, the Synthetic Sports Field, the Leisure Centre and new student residences.
Engagement of the University in the emergency crisis of the 2009 bushfires was stressful but gratifying that the University was able to be such a positive support to the community and the fire fighters stationed on site. It opened people’s eyes to the resources the University had right on their door step. The University’s contract catering service to the firefighters prompted the DSE and CFA to use contract caterers to supply meals at other bushfire sites during the Black Saturday fires campaign. In 2014 the University provided accommodation and meals to evacuees and recovery personnel during the Hazelwood Mine Fire.
Alan considers his job to have been unique describing every day as different not knowing what question might be asked, what might come out of left field or job needing to be carried out; what thing might prove frustrating, challenging or satisfying. All these have developed Alan’s talent to be flexible and ability to adapt.
He feels privileged to have worked with so many talented people on campus - people with ideas and the drive to make them happen, implementing them with resourcefulness, and rising to the challenges presented.
One of the best things associated with Federation University, and Monash before that, was the ability of staff and students to get to know each other. Staff are approachable so students are able to ask questions and seek some extra help.
Lots of staff live nearby and engage in their own way with our community. Some staff and past students have put back into the community and University. The arts is a good example of this.
For the general public, the loss of Alan Scarlett always being present at events and always willing to be the hands-on person will be huge.
Alan, thank you for all you have done for our community over the past 27 years.
Churchill & District News has a particularly large thank you to say to Alan for his involvement during the time we were provided with a home at the University, paid for by the University and for the particular care he took of us in that situation. As we relocated to the Church office we were given computer desks and chairs which are still in use today.
After many years of solid work for others it is time to take some time for Alan. He will go skiing in Canada, continue with archery, travel with a mate and take care of some work around the house - things on wife Sue’s list!
From Churchill & District News, the wider community and your colleagues at the University, Alan, we wish you a long, healthy, happy and satisfying retirement.