The hard work is officially over for about 140 students who have graduated from Federation University's Arts Academy and TAFE.
As is tradition in Ballarat, the graduates received their certificates at the Regent Theatre before parading down Lydiard Street in their academic robes to the Mining Exchange.
The students were the first to graduate from Fed Uni this year, with a further five graduation ceremonies at the university's Mount Helen campus next week and others at the Gippsland campus.
In all, about 1200 students will receive their formal qualifications.
"This is the culmination of many years of work and sacrifice for our graduates and an exciting time for them as they enter the workforce and build their careers," said Federation University vice chancellor Professor Helen Bartlett.
"The Ballarat CBD ceremony is always a highlight of our year as it gives the University and its graduates the opportunity to celebrate with family and friends in the heart of our community."
Professor Bartlett also made a special presentation, the Vice-Chancellor's Award for Excellence, to Ballarat mum Joanne Neil-White.
The TAFE graduate was inspired to study the Advanced Diploma of Building Design (Architectural) after building her own home, achieving outstanding results while overcoming the challenges of studying while raising a family.
The graduation ceremonies will also mark a milestone for 10 PhD students who have completed research in diverse areas ranging from mental health to the environment, including Ballarat graduate Paul Sadler's whose PhD addressed Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for Insomnia and Depression Among Older Adults, and Robert Holmes whose PHD was on Reducing Climate Change Related Fugitive Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Operational Longwall Coal.
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