QT Canberra saw hosted ANU’s townies congregate as the Griffin Hall commenced its academic year on Thursday 12th March with an abundance of new members, drinks, dancing, and onion canapés.

The Griffin Hall Members Association is a non-residential hall so students living off-campus are able to enjoy the on-campus lifestyle. The purpose is to promote inclusion by providing residents from Canberra and its surrounding regions with social, sporting and academic opportunities that they could otherwise not enjoy.

“Commencement is an important event as it marks the official start to the year,” stated Paige Enright, the incumbent President of Griffin Hall. Unlike traditional mortar-and-brick halls, the commencement event is one of the first opportunities for its residents to get to know each other.

“Commencement holds a special place in my heart because it was where I met some of my best friends,” said Enright, “[it’s] a chance to bring in the year for new and returning members”.

The leadership team actively made an effort to mingle with the new members of the hall; returning, new, and non-residents all felt very welcomed from the beginning of the evening.

Hosted by Griffin Hall’s funny man, Sean Cunningham, the night’s formalities included emboldening speeches from Head of Hall, Tania Willis and President Enright, and introductions to the leadership team.

Local, up-and-coming musician and Griffin member Darcy Welsh provided music during the formal part of the evening. Post-formalities, DJ Hips took over the stage, with the 4×8 dance floor overflowing with attendees by the end of the night. A majority of the dance floor was later seen at Mr Wolf for the Kanye West Appreciation Society’s launch.

Canapés were also in excess this year as the quota for the event was much higher than the turnout, making for huge catering improvement on previous Griffin Hall Commencements.

“QT put on a great night for us with a lot of food,” commented Enright.

Onions are also notably in season with a seemingly unlimited amount of onion and goats cheese canapés on offer.

Approximately 27% of new students do not make a friend in their 1st year, of which almost all live off-campus. The ANU has 70% of its students living off campus who do not get the same chance to enjoy college life.

Though the event did not sell out like previous years, the night had approximately 280 attendees, of which a large proportion were new members in their first and second years.