The first Formal Dinner of the second semester took the form of a special Mid-winter Christmas celebration at St Margaret's on Sunday, 14 July.
And all the usual Christmas trappings were in evidence in the Dining Hall including a sparkling Christmas tree with lights, tinsel, snow flakes, Christmas crackers, etc. Of course, the kitchen staff also provided an amazing array of Christmas food including a glazed ham carved off the bone.
Earlier in the afternoon, the Executive Committee had organised a special event for Members in the Valentine Common Room where floors presented their gifts to one another, through Santa of course, in true Christmas spirit.
Special guest at evening dinner was Adan Suazo who has recently submitted his PhD thesis for examination through the University of Otago's National Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies. He holds a graduate degree in peace and conflict research from Uppsala University (Sweden) and a bachelor's degree in political science from Concordia University (Canada).
Adan is an environmental security analyst also co-editor of the forthcoming 'Handbook of Positive Peace', where he is
editing scholarly and practice work that examines the connections between
environmental sustainability and positive peace. Prior to this, he worked as
the founding coordinator of the Loyola Sustainability Research Centre (Concordia
University), where he collaborated on sustainability and peacebuilding projects
with the International Secretariat for the Convention on Biological Diversity,
the International Institute for Sustainable Development and Future Earth.
Following the Christmas theme of peace and goodwill to all, Adan's talk during Dinner was titled 'The Opportunities for Peace in Water Abundant New Zealand'.
His research focuses on the conditions that influence
the emergence and intensification of water conflicts in New Zealand, and
the important role that ordinary citizens can play in peacemaking such
conflicts. For more information about his fascinating and important research, click here.
(Story by the Master, Dr Charles Tustin)