Celebrating the milestone of graduation
Originally published in the April edition of the Trinity Grammarian, accessible here.
Whilst it would be redundant to comment any more on the difficulties faced by many of the school community due to the pandemic, it is important to reflect on what has changed because of it. That is, what comes next for us as students, teachers, and as a school? In this piece I thought I would share some of the hopes and aspirations I have for myself, as well as for the Year 12 cohort of 2022; this is the year level that in many ways has the greatest opportunity to influence a new ‘normal’ for life at Trinity.
The predominant reason for this, put simply, is the connection afforded us by the return to on-site learning. We have the ability to ask questions and follow up with teachers after class directly, and we are able to spend lunchtimes outside, or at different locations around the school, including in the Cafeteria and Tudor Centre. If we choose, we can run around, kick some sort of ball, or chat about nothing in particular with our mates. Whilst the essential nature of human connection is at the forefront of many of our minds due to our prolonged deprivation, I hope that as we spend more time together, we can all strive to remember its importance by supporting those around us. So, with some work and a little play, the graduating Class of 2022 hopes for a year that rejects dullness and embraces connection, community, and opportunity.
Of course, as a cohort we want to be remembered fondly. The question we must ask ourselves therefore, is for what do we wish to be remembered? The aspirations of the student leadership group this year, as well as the senior year level in general, revolve around Trinity maintaining its celebration of difference. This is the inherent quality of being in a place where you need not try to ‘fit in’. All those who individually constitute the school, whoever those individuals may be, will be supported, included, and find belonging within our gates. This idea was reinforced to the Year 12s by General The Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove at the Stephen Jones ‘Be Glorious’ Leadership Breakfast, when he suggested that leadership is not about standing above, below, or beside others, but rather it is standing with them. As Rudyard Kipling wrote in his poem ‘If’ in 1895: ‘If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, or walk with Kings – nor lose the common touch…Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it, and – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son.’ As a group of students, we aspire to have the whole school community walking together.
This vision of an inclusive community is encapsulated in the work of the Harambee team. Their efforts were on display at the Harambee Sundee event. Running, riding, rowing, reminiscing – we did it all on Sunday 6 March when we gathered for the second annual Harambee Sundee. Working together as a whole school community, encompassing the ELC, the Junior School, Senior School, Ruyton students in the Coordinate Program, parents, staff and OTGs, we raised funds to support Harambee’s mission in Australia and overseas. The organisers of this event created an inclusive experience which demonstrated our willingness as a school to raise others up and connect with those around us through our actions.
Earlier, I mentioned the students’ desire to enjoy the engagement that comes with a return to onsite learning; it seems that we have embraced the work of our outreach programs as one way to experience this. As a community, it is an entrenched goal to look out for everyone we encounter. As a cohort and a school, we must continue to challenge the way we think and question the reasons behind what we do. The shared effort displayed at Harambee Sundee serves to highlight the strong sense of service to which the Class of 2022 aspires and which we will take with us into the future, far beyond the Charles Street gates.
During these last few weeks of the school year, we marked the graduation of our Year 6s to the next phase of their schooling, and of our Year 12s to the next phase of their lives.
Year 12, School Captain 2022