Since 1995 Charles Sturt University Regional Archives has actively pursued a policy of engaging with its stakeholders through its Archives Advisory Committee.
Advice & discussion with stakeholders
The Charles Sturt University Archives Advisory Committee was established in 1995 by the Vice-Chancellor to serve as a forum of stakeholders, both internal and external to the University, providing advice to the CSU Regional Archives on the following matters:
- policy development and implementation;
- promotion of CSU Regional Archives and its collections for learning; teaching and research; and
- regional community engagement.
Membership includes representatives from all key groups
L to R: Professor Anthony Cahalan (Dean, Faculty of Arts); Professor Sue Thomas (Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) and Presiding Officer of the Archives Advisory Committee); Alan Ventress(Director, State Records NSW); Professor Lyn Gorman (Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration))
The membership of the committee has been selected to ensure a broad range of interests and professional experts from key stakeholder groups served by the CSU Regional Archives are represented.
The University groups (or internal stakeholders) with committee representation are:
- Research (Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) and Director, Research Services),
- Faculty of Arts (Dean, Faculty of Arts),
- Records Management (Records Manager) and
- Archives (Manager, CSU Regional Archives & University Art Collection).
External organisations or interests that participate include:
- State Records NSW (Director and Manager Archives Control)
- Hay Historical Society
- Temora Community Archives
What does the committee discuss?
The Archives Advisory Committee convenes annually and items discussed at the meeting include the CSU Regional Archives Annual Report, a report from the University Records Manager and an update from the Director, State Records NSW. Depending on the content of the reports committee members provide input and advice on developing future strategies and projects.
A communication success story
This committee is one of CSU Regional Archives’ greatest strengths. It facilitates communication with stakeholders and provides them with the opportunity to give input and advice into the organisations ongoing growth and development. Consequently it builds and strengthens relationships both within both the University and the community. This is reflected in the continued growth of the Archives as shown by the statistics. 2008 was another excellent year for CSU Regional Archives.
- Researcher/visitor numbers were up by 18% from 2007 figures,
- items made available in the search room increased by 28%.,
- The number of completed enquiries rose by 16% and
- the percentage of users classified as academic and professional researchers increased from 32% to 36%.
Some of the Key developments in 2008
- A joint Tom Lennon exhibition with the Museum of the Riverina attracted 10,742 visitors over a three month period.
- The 40 page catalogue to accompany the exhibition was short-listed for a national design award in the 2009 Museums Australia Multimedia and Publication Design Awards
- In March 2008 the CSU Regional Archives signed an agreement with the Page Research Centre Limited to house its archival collection on a fee-for-storage basis.
- CSURA funded three Summer Research Scholarships in 2008-2009.
- During 2008 staff of CSURA continued to contribute regular fortnightly articles entitled ‘At the Archives’ to the Weekend Advertiser. These articles have helped promote the Archives and associated events and continue to prove very popular with the public.
Tribute to CSU Regional Archives Advisory Committee Member
In sad news, the Committee lost a long term member and great friend and supporter of the CSU Regional Archives when Mrs Caroline Merrylees passed away in August 2009. Mrs Merrylees had served continuously on the Archives Advisory Committee since 1995 and for many years had been a driving force behind the Hay Historical Society. The Merrylees family has a long and distinguished association with education in the Riverina. Caroline’s father in law was William Merrylees, advocate of the Riverine University League in the 1950s and 1960s and the Wagga Campus Library of Charles Sturt University was named in his honour. Caroline will be sorely missed.
Manager, CSU Regional Archives & University Art Collection.