On Thursday 4 August 2011, Deakin’s Division of Student Life held a memorial service for the Norwegian students in response to the shocking and tragic events that recently took place in Oslo.
The service included having the students light a candle for each of the persons who lost their lives in the shootings and bombing. When a technical sound problem prevented the recorded playing of the Norwegian National Anthem, the students rose as one and sang it beautifully.
A common Australian tradition is to present a sprig of yellow flowers from a wattle tree as a symbol of support and unity. After the formal part of the service was over, the Norwegian students and Deakin staff enjoyed companionship and refreshments.
Many of the students thanked Deakin for the day. However, it was the staff members in attendance who were truly grateful, as it was impossible not to be moved by the students’ demonstrated moral strength, ethical courage and the compassion that they hold for their fellow Norwegians.