A “BIG” week doesn’t quite capture the true enormity of all the happenings for the alumni program during the week that was Mental Health Awareness Week Oct 9 – 13.
We started off the week by continuing with our Green Gift Initiative. With the aim of fostering future alumni engagement, the program presented our current Year 12s with the thoughtful gift of a plant—a symbol of their enduring connection to the school community. These plants serve as tokens, reminding them that this is a place where roots were formed, and a place that stands ready to support their growth and flourishing in the years ahead.
While not exclusively tied to alumni, the program represented during the Wellbeing team’s Movement for Mental Health Monday walk around the oval. The aim was to advocate for regular physical activity, emphasising its positive impact on mental well-being. We successfully gathered a significant group of participants who joined us in spruiking this crucial message. A HUGE thank you to all the students who joined us at the beginning of such an important week.
Tuesday October 10 we once again teamed with Wellbeing to invite Hao Lu ’17 to speak with students about her experience as a young carer. Hao talked about the responsibilities she was charged with as a teenager and how these impacted her physically, mentally, and emotionally. She also spoke to the toll the role had on her mental health and the ripple effect that impacted her siblings. Yet, despite the many challenges Hao has had to endure, she was such a positive force; full of sage advice about seeking support, setting personal boundaries, and finding your passion and outlet. Her story is one of courage and resilience. Thank you, Hao, for a truly unforgettable Q&A, and thank you also to the students who came for the lunch but stayed for the deep and meaningful.
Friday 13 October (nothing ominous about that) saw the year 12s come together to celebrate their graduation at Moonee Valley Racecourse. This year the captivating Lydia Tesema was the guest speaker. Lydia’s life is a fusion of diverse experiences and boundless creativity. Her passion for the arts, coupled with an insatiable curiosity, led her on a journey of self-discovery and connection. A staunch advocate for social justice, and for embracing the richness of life; her story unfolded as a testament to resilience, empowerment, and a commitment to making the world a more inclusive place. Lydia urged the Year 12s to believe in themselves and to follow their dreams; such inspiring words to leave them with. Thank you, Lydia, for sharing your story and motivating reflection in us all!
Lastly, Monday October 16 saw the entire school come together for the 2023 awards ceremony and for one final send off for the Year 12s. Award contributors, alumni Helen Papadimitriou ‘83 and Dr. Jozica Kutin ‘84, attended the ceremony to present their awards for excellence and achievement in English (Helen) and Psychology (Dr Joz). Congratulations to Ricardo Vom (10D) and Elizabeth Tan (11F) for their commitment, dedication and passion for English and Psychology, respectively. Helen and Dr. Joz, we appreciate you making the trek down the mountain and across the city to be with us, your benefaction is truly impactful, and we cannot thank you enough!
Ms Nicole Gurd – Alumni Coordinator