The group was welcomed at the college oval by Longreach Regional Council mayor, Ed Warren, who recalled the days of a strong sheep industry, which he said had been the core activity for both the college and the community.
He paid tribute to former mayor, Sir James Walker, who was a strong advocate for any opportunity for Longreach and who had a vision of a “university of the outback”, and to the council of the time, which donated land for the institution to be built on.
“The college doesn’t have as many students these days but we’re working on that by bringing the sheep industry back,” he said. “They’re still shearing the same way, and they will still need the same number of people working in the industry.”
He urged visitors to take advantage of the ways Longreach adapted to commodity price downturns, by going into tourism.