Deb Foskey, Medley (1967)
"I came to Medley Hall as a 17 year old straight from high school at Bacchus Marsh. I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up and ended up doing different majors from those I planned. (French, Economics and Psychology bit the dust; English and Philosophy replaced them). Career advice hadn’t been one of BMHS’s strong points.
I didn’t realise when I arrived at Medley in 1967 the significance of it being the first year females joined the male residents. I had three brothers and no sisters so being among men was normal for me. We girls – 12 of us – were concentrated in the main building where we were told that there had once been a velvet toilet reflecting Medley Halls glorious past as the Italian Embassy.
Deb and classmates outside Medley in 1967 (Deb is front right)
1967 was an amazing year to be young and in first year at University. There was the Vietnam War to worry about. There were courses that went for a whole year and I have to admit, this allowed for a lot of fun as cramming before exams got one through. I read some great literature and philosophy opened my mind. I fell in love several times. In other words, Medley Hall was fertile ground for a young woman eager to learn about the world.
I made strong and lasting friendships at Medley Hall. Some I’ve lost and no amount of Googling will find them. Others have been rediscovered and we have a closeness provided by those days of sharing meals, conversation and music.
I have done a lot since my time at Medley. I’ve lived an ‘alternative’ lifestyle in remote East Gippsland and produced three children; become a forest campaigner which led to Green politics and a period as an elected Member of the ACT Legislative Assembly (2004-2008); continued exploration of how the world works through a Masters in Human Ecology (a study of the planning of Canberra as a series of utopian visions) and then a Doctorate in International Politics on the global politics of population and reproduction. I have been a teacher at every level of education and I have just retired from my job as coordinator at Tubbut Neighbourhood House.
This year I’ve gone back to Green politics as co-convenor of the East Gippsland Greens; it is impossible to sit back while our communities and natural environments become more threatened with every year of political inaction.
Medley Hall is where it all started: it was a great place for a country girl to begin to learn about the world"