A New Life Fellow

Tuesday 16 October, 2012
by Jonathan Billingham
Bill Barwick (New Collegian 1971-75) has been conferred as a Life Fellow of New College

New College recognizes and honours those people who have served the College with distinction and who exemplify the ideals for which the College stands. It does this by way of the conferral of the title "Life Fellow". The first Life Fellow was Rev. Canon Dr Stuart Barton Babbage in 1993. In April, the Master, Professor Trevor Cairney, recommended to the Board that Mr William (Bill) Harold Barwick should be conferred with this honour. They agreed unanimously that he should become the 15th Life Fellow of New College. The Board made its decision based on Bill’s leadership when at College, his ongoing service that has spanned 41 years, his example as a collegian and as an alumnus, as well as his continuing advocacy and support for the College and its residents.

Bill Barwick arrived at New College in 1971 as a fresh-faced and keen young man from the Riverina. He very quickly involved himself in the life of the fledgling community. He came to UNSW to study Arts and Education, living at New until 1975 and graduating in 1976 with Arts majoring in English and Australian History. He was to become a teacher, serving in various roles before taking long-service leave this year that will transition him into retirement later in the year. His final position has been as Deputy Principal at Coleambally Central School, Coleambally.

His contributions while at College are legendary. The highlights include:

  • Collegian 1971-75
  • 1973-1975 NCSA Secretary
  • 1971-1975 Editor, College Magazine
  • NCSA Appeals Committee
  • Director New College ‘Garden Night’ (Revue) 1975
  • Foundation College Librarian
  • Foundation editor, NCSA newsletter "New's News"
  • 1974 NCSA Collegian of the Year (Indeed the first person to be given this honour)

Bill Barwick’s commitment to New College did not end in 1975. Since that time he has remained in close contact with successive Masters and has kept a close eye on the College. For many years he would stay in a guest flat at New College for up to 6 weeks when he came from the Riverina to mark HSC History and English exams at the Showground. Bill would arrive somewhere between the College Revue and the Valedictory Dinner. He was a regular guest at the high table most years and has become known to many generations of Collegians who have all been keen to hear stories of the early days at New. His commitment to the College has also extended to his generous support of the College scholarship program since its inception in 2004.

There is no doubt that Bill Barwick was an inspirational and well-loved member of the College Community in his five years at New. In the years since, he has never lost his love for the place, nor a commitment to its goals.