Graduation hat with degree paper on a stack of book against blurred background
Graduation hat with degree paper on a stack of book against blurred background

SMITH: Year drawing to a close

ONE of the things I love about my job is end of year celebrations with students.

Most people get to enjoy one or two awards nights, depending on how many kids you have.

But I get to see so many smiling faces from preschool, primary and high school right through to TAFE and university.

Lots of first kids with beaming parents and big families celebrating every achievement.

And of course a few older parents with that tired but proud look that says we are done.

As people hit December we look back at the year and think about what it took to get us, them, me and I to this point.

What happened this year which can be measured and captured, articulated and narrated?

What story will you tell at the Christmas party or end of year function that lets people know what sort of year it has been?

I tend to a lot more listening at this time of year.

Relishing the opportunity to hear about family accomplishments and school successes.

Tales of survival and struggle will be all to prevalent after months of bushfire.

Each person wondering what lies ahead in the summer months.

If I was to tell a story of council at this year’s “graduation”, it would certainly be about struggling against the odds and overcoming great adversity with a mind to changing the future.

Long term thinking is lost in the modern political game.

But at the local level we can escape some of that, even if some people do not see it.

2019 is a defining year for our city that will deliver a more sustainable future where our population will grow, our businesses will improve and the plan now three years in the making, will play out decades from now.

The question now is who believes enough to back our city into that future.

Graduation is just the first step.