UTAS Diploma of Family History Graduation 2021

Artist’s impression of my graduation attire

Having completed the Utas Diploma of Family History in 2020 and enjoyed it so much, I decided in 2021 to continue with my University studies.

Through the excellent online company “Future Learn” I completed the University College Dublin Irish language course “Irish 101”. Then I studied the “Book of Kells” course through Trinity College Dublin. I had been lucky to visit the Book of Kells in the Long Hall Trinity College Dublin in 2015. Both courses were very enjoyable, even if I did have to participate by zoom conferencing at 2 in the morning on several occasions due to the difference in time change with Ireland.

Mid 2021, I re-enrolled at Utas to study for my Bachelor of Arts, History major, Tourism minor. I commenced units HTA102 and HGA318 in Semester 2. I was awarded 8 units of Advanced standing for completing the Diploma of Family History. This cut down the units required to complete my BA to 16 units instead of 24.

I received an invitation to attend my graduation in Hobart following the completion of my Diploma of Family history. Although I would have loved to have been able to attend in person and celebrate with my family and friends, due to Covid I graduated in absentia on 14 August, 2021.

14 August, 2021 was a very exciting day for me. I had arisen early because I had an assignment to submit for HTA102 and wanted to finish that before I watched the Diploma of Family History graduation ceremony on Utube.

Barry had made the day special for me by creating a cheese platter with bubbly to enjoy while we watched the graduation being live streamed. Although I felt a little sad that I couldn’t be there, I was able to relax and watch the ceremony unfolding in front of me. We stood when the procession commenced and the Vice Chancellor and dignitaries took their seats on stage. We clapped each graduate and laughed at the jokes Hannah Gatsby who was awarded an honorary doctorate made.

Hannah Gatsby receiving her Honorary Doctorate at Utas

By the end of the year we had a further celebration. I had been invited by Utas to apply for a RRES Scholarship. I am delighted to share with you the exciting news that due to my ongoing research and study in Ireland and Australia regarding my Prendergast family history, I have been awarded a Scholarship as well as an internship to participate at any Museum, Gallery, Library or Archive in Australia.

A Princess in Enniscorthy Castle.

Tuesday 30 May, 2017

Every little girl dreams of being a Princess in a Castle. We grow up with stories of Snow White and Cinderella but no one really believes that they can live in a Castle – even for a short time.

Today I felt like a Princess. As I watched the tables being laid, the flowers being arranged, the food being plated up and people running to and fro to ensure that everything was ready for my High Tea to take place in Enniscorthy Castle, I felt like a Princess.

I had to keep pinching myself that this was really happening. I was so excited. Continue reading “A Princess in Enniscorthy Castle.”

Taking Tea at Enniscorthy Castle

Tuesday 30 May, 2017 Morning

The sun is shining, the birds are singing. What could be a better way to start the day for such an historical event? High Tea at Enniscorthy Castle.
Whilst serving me yet another delicious breakfast, Moira greeted me with a “Good morning bride”. And, yes I do feel as a bride does on her special day.

Just as a wedding day takes many hours of planning and there are many people involved, so has the High Tea celebration that will be held at Enniscorthy Castle this afternoon.
There are a number of people who have been involved that I would like to thank. Continue reading “Taking Tea at Enniscorthy Castle”

Enniscorthy here we come!

Click to go to the 28th. May  –  Click to go to the 29th. May

Saturday 27 May 2017

History is in the making! Preparations for the High Tea in Enniscorthy Castle are to be finalized. Today we will travel from Dublin to Enniscorthy by Wexford Bus.

Continue reading “Enniscorthy here we come!”

Marsh’s Library: a treasure trove of literature

Friday 26 May, 2017

Blessed with yet another glorious Summer’s day, I strolled through the streets of Dublin to keep my 10 am appointment with Dr. Jason McElligott, Keeper, Marsh’s Library.

I love the smell and the sight of historical and valuable books lined up neatly on shelves. People often ask me where I grew up. I reply “In a Library!” My inspiring mum was a Librarian for 40 years in Australia and I spent many happy days quietly wiling away the hours reading beautiful books in the libraries that she worked in.

Continue reading “Marsh’s Library: a treasure trove of literature”

The importance of taking care of your family history

Clans and Surnames Conference, Nenagh, Tipperary Ireland

rachelLast year with the help of the lovely Rachel Spano, Senior Archivist of the State Library of Queensland, Australia, I was able to pass on techniques for Preservation, Conservation and Restoration at a Workshop that I conducted where Rachel Spano participated in an outreach skype session.

When I held the Workshop at the Whitsundays Regional Council Library in Cannonvale little did I realize that just 4 months later, Cyclone Debbie would cause catastrophic damage to the Whitsundays and demolish the Cannonvale Library and the Whitsunday Family History Library in Proserpine. Continue reading “The importance of taking care of your family history”

National Archives Kew visit

Saturday 13th May, 2017

Fellow genealogists refer to the National Archives at Kew in England as one of THE most important repositories in the world.

I have long wanted to visit the National Archives as they hold a large collection with relevance to most Australians. My Prendergast family included. Continue reading “National Archives Kew visit”

Radio Interview in Ireland

The Quest to find Prendergast ancestors continues. Radio Interview in Ireland

Lorna Moloney has been presenting the genealogy radio show on Raidio Corca Baiscinn since 2014. Raidio Corca Baiscinnin is based in South West Clare, Ireland.  Lorna has invited all the leading genealogists from around the world as her guests on her show.

Lorna Maloney1

I was first interviewed on Radio Corca Bascinn in 2014 when I had just started out on my journey to find out more about my Irish Roots and at a time when my father Jim Prendergast was gravely ill and losing his battle with Parkinson’s disease. Continue reading “Radio Interview in Ireland”

Australian preparations for the High Tea to be held at Enniscorthy Castle with the team in Ireland.

Staging a High Tea at Enniscorthy Castle

Enniscorthy Castle


This is the way the Castle was set up during the time David Hasslacher and hid family lived here



Continue reading “Australian preparations for the High Tea to be held at Enniscorthy Castle with the team in Ireland.”

An Australian first



How many Australian Academics can proudly announce that they have been  invited to deliver a paper at the Conference “Clans and Surnames”, Nenagh, Tipperary in Ireland scheduled for May, 2017?  I am thrilled to announce that I can. I was over the moon when Lorna Moloney, the well respected Irish Genealogist invited me to deliver a paper on my Prendergast family.

What a wonderful Genealogy year this invitation has capped off for me!

Following my research visit to Ireland to study at the University College Cork Genealogy Summer School in June 2015, I have had the pleasure of conducting 7 workshops throughout our Whitsunday Community this year. During the research and development of the Workshops to be delivered,  I learned a lot about the process of Preserving, Conserving and Restoring precious heirlooms and Documents.

At the Whitsunday Regional Council Library in Cannonvale October 19, 2016, we were delighted to have Rachael Spano, Senior Conservator of the State Library of Queensland, via Skype, generously donate her time to impart her extensive knowledge in the art of Preservation, Conservation and Restoration. It was a most interesting segment. workshop-117102016

I enjoyed studying at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow for the 6 week on line genealogy course commencing in April . The course was entitled – Genealogy: Researching your family tree.I found this course to be most useful, well researched, well presented with easy to follow lectures on a competent Computer interface. I would highly recommend this course.

In November supported by a RADF grant awarded jointly by the Whitsunday Regional Council and the Queensland Government, I flew down to Sydney to attend the SAG Seminar : Lost in Immigration and Travel. During the four days I was in Sydney I took the opportunity  to conduct research at the State Records of New South Wales and the Mitchell Library – part of the State Library of NSW.

Mitchell Library
Mitchell Library


With all the Australian and Irish research that I have conducted this year and the information I have collated, I can’t wait to co-present “Conservation and Collection care of your valuable family heirloom and documents” jointly with Lorna Moloney on 18 May, 2017 Clans and Surnames Conference in Nenagh, Tipperary, Ireland.

The following day 19 May, 2017, I will be delighted to deliver the Prendergast paper explaining all the research that I have undertaken with the help of many Archivists, genealogists, professors and experts from the various repositories around the world at the Clans and Surnames Conference.