Trinity College (University of Melbourne)

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Trinity College
Arms of Trinity College
University University of Melbourne
Location Royal Parade, Parkville, Victoria
Coordinates 37°47′41″S 144°57′32″E / 37.7948°S 144.9589°E / -37.7948; 144.9589Coordinates: 37°47′41″S 144°57′32″E / 37.7948°S 144.9589°E / -37.7948; 144.9589
Full name Trinity College of and within the University of Melbourne
Motto Pro Ecclesia, Pro Patria (Latin)
Motto in English For church, for country
Established 1872
Named for The Holy Trinity
Warden Kenneth Hinchcliff
Undergraduates 252
Postgraduates 47
Horsfall Chapel from Royal Parade

Trinity College is the oldest residential college of the University of Melbourne.[1] Founded in 1872 on a site granted to the Church of England for the university, Trinity is unique among Australian university colleges in the scope of its educational programs. In addition to its resident community of 300 University of Melbourne and University of Divinity students, Trinity's programs includes Trinity College Foundation Studies, which prepares around 1700 international students for admission to the University of Melbourne annually; the Trinity College Theological School, an Anglican theological college, now a college of the University of Divinity; and the Trinity Institute, which runs summer and winter schools for young leaders, as well as other shorter learning and leadership programs.


Trinity College was founded in 1872 by the first Anglican Bishop of Melbourne, Charles Perry. The college was affiliated with the University of Melbourne in 1876. The Trinity College Theological School was founded by Bishop James Moorhouse in 1877.[2]

In 1883 the college became the first university college in Australia to admit women when Lilian Helen Alexander was accepted as a non-resident student.[3] With the establishment of the Trinity Women's Hostel (which later became Janet Clarke Hall) in 1886, Trinity admitted women as resident students, making it the first university college in Australia to do so.

In 1989 the Trinity Education Centre, later renamed Trinity College Foundation Studies, was established to prepare international students for entry to the University of Melbourne.

Since 2001, Trinity has also offered summer school programs to high school age students from around Australia and internationally. In 2010 the college hosted its first Juilliard Winter Jazz School, which was repeated in 2011. These short courses form the core of the Trinity Institute.

Architecture and main buildings[edit]

Situated to the north of the main university campus, Trinity's various ivy-clad stone and brick buildings surround a large grassed area, known as the Bulpadock.

The college's main buildings include:

  • 1870-2: Leeper Building (formerly the Provost's Lodge)
  • 1878: Bishops' Building (named after Charles Perry and James Moorhouse, the first and second Bishops of Melbourne)
  • 1880: Dining Hall
  • 1883–87: Clarke's Building
  • 1914–17: Horsfall Chapel
  • 1933: Behan Building (named after John Clifford Valentine Behan, a former warden)
  • 1958: Memorial Building (commonly called "Jeopardy")
  • 1963–65: Cowan Building (named after Ronald Cowan, a former warden)
  • 1995–96: Evan Burge Building (Library)
  • 2006–07: Gourlay Building ("Woodheap")
  • 2014–16 : The Gateway building

Other buildings[edit]

Facilities located in Parkville and Carlton beyond the main campus are occupied by the Trinity College Foundation Studies program.

  • Foundation Studies Centre (FSC): Located at 33–35 Royal Parade, the FSC building has a number of tutorial rooms and a drama room. Literature, drama and history of ideas staff are located here. The building also has a student common room with sofas, tables and a kitchen for student use.
  • 715 Swanston Street: Trinity occupies two floors of this building. It has two lecture theatres and tutorial rooms. The Swanston Street building serves as a "student welfare precinct", with the student welfare office, student counsellor, and chaplaincy located in the lower ground floor. Departments with staff located here are: examinations, extended programs, timetabling, mathematics, economics and chemistry. A computer lab can also be found here. The study area is often used for quiet study and lunch. Swanston Street also houses "The Prayer Space" – a room set aside for quiet reflection, prayer and rest. Facilities for ablutions are also provided for students of the Islamic faith.
  • 199 Grattan Street: This is where student services is located. Student services organises orientations, valedictories and excursions during term breaks to locations such as Mount Baw Baw, Uluru, the Great Ocean Road and Sydney. The building also has a tutorial room and a drama room. A number of drama staff are also located here. Also in this building is a student common room with table tennis and foosball facilities, as well as sofas.
  • 29 Royal Parade: This is where most English for Academic Purposes (EAP) classes are held. It also houses many EAP teachers' offices.
  • 18–20 Lincoln Square North: This building has a drama room, a physics lab, student computer lab and six tutorial rooms. Staff in economics, accounting, environment and development, media and communications, psychology, physics, biology and mathematics have their offices here.

Residential life[edit]

Clubs and societies[edit]

The Trinity College Associated Clubs (TCAC) provides leadership for the annual Orientation Week program at the beginning of the year and facilitates a multitude of social, cultural and sporting events throughout the year. Trinity's clubs and societies run many different functions and events throughout the year. The current student clubs include the Wine Cellar, Billiards Room, Coffee Haus, Dialectic Society (formed in 1877), Music Society, Environmental Committee, Dance Club, Arts Studio, Film Society, Drama Club, Informal Dining Society, Games Society, Cooking Society and Racquet Society. The students also run an active program of social service and community outreach, including such programs as tutoring in local schools and educational visits to remote Indigenous communities.


Trinity College participates in many different sports in intercollegiate competition, including Australian rules football, soccer, netball, hockey, athletics, swimming, volleyball, squash, tennis and badminton. The college also has a particularly strong tradition in rowing and rugby. The college has its own multi-purpose synthetic court.

College song[edit]

The current version of the college song was written by the fifth warden, Evan Burge (1974-1996), and set to the tune of the "Jupiter" movement from Gustav Holst's The Planets.

Where Bishops' lifts its ivy'd tower
and Clarke's long cloisters run.
The College Oak stands spreading forth its branches to the sun.
And here are joy and laughter and loyal friends as well;
The Bulpadock rejoices in our efforts to excel.
And whene'er we think on all these things
wherever we may be,
We shall raise our voices higher and sing of Trinity.

College graces[edit]

Opening grace, said prior to the meal at formal and celebratory dinners:

Benedictus benedicat, per Jesum Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

The opening grace is a traditional and common Latin grace, the meaning of which may be translated as "May the blessed one bless [the food], through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Closing grace, said at the conclusion of dinner:

Presider: "Laus Deo" ("Praise be to God")
Response: "Deo Gratias" ("Thanks be to God")

Chapel and choir[edit]

The Choir of Trinity College have become known especially, but not exclusively, for choral music in the tradition of English cathedrals and the collegiate chapels of Oxford and Cambridge universities. The choir sings Evensong in the chapel during term. Choral Evensong at Trinity has become a well-known liturgical event in Melbourne. The choir also performs locally and tours internationally and have made a number of radio broadcasts and CD recordings, including five albums for ABC Classics.

From 1956 to 2016, the college provided liturgical hospitality to a local Anglican congregation, the Canterbury Fellowship. The fellowship's choir sang for choral services on Sunday mornings and Evensong out of term time.


Sub wardens (vice wardens)[edit]

  • 1876–1882: J. W. Hackett
  • 1898–1904: Reginald Stephen
  • 1905–1912: E. L. Robson
  • 1919–1925: R. L. Blackwood
  • 1925–1932: D. G. Taylor


  • 1933–1946 L C Wilcher
  • 1941–1944 Herbert C. Corben (acting dean)
  • 1944–1946 A. G. L. Shaw, J. N. Falkingham (acting deans)
  • 1947–1951 A. G. L. Shaw
  • 1950–1951 Peter Balmford (acting dean)
  • 1951–1952 P E Wynter (acting dean)
  • 1950–1951 Peter Balmford (acting dean)
  • 1953–1964 John Riddoch Poynter
  • 1959 Peter Balmford (acting dean)
  • 1965 D W Bruce
  • 1966-1968 PK B Mason
  • 1968 J D Merralls
  • 1969-1971 R W Gregory
  • 1972-1974 R A Fawns
  • 1975-1977 J M Davis
  • 1978-1984 Bryan Deschamp
  • 1984-1987 Peter N Wellock
  • 1988-1990 Leith K Hancock
  • 1991 James S Craig, Michael R. Jones (acting deans)
  • 1992-1994 E M Chapman
  • 1995-1996 J J Wiersma
  • 1997 Damian Xavier Powell (acting dean)
  • 1998 John Adams (dean of students)

Residential deans and deputy wardens[edit]

  • 2000–2004: Stewart D. Gill
  • 2006–2007: Peter J. Tregear
  • 2008–2014: Campbell P. Bairstow
  • 2015: Sally Dalton-Brown (acting dean)
  • 2014-2015: Campbell P. Bairstow (acting warden)
  • 2016-present: Campbell P. Barstow (dean and deputy warden)

Notable alumni[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ Selleck 2003, p. 8.
  2. ^ J. Grant, Perspectives of A Century (Melbourne: The Council, 1972), pp. 11, 15, 104-5.
  3. ^ Selleck 2003, pp. 268, 280.
  4. ^ It's An Honour website

External links[edit]