The following snapshots of student learning opportunities and achievements are evidence that learning takes place in varied locations and is not restricted to the classroom.

  • Ruby Preece distinguished herself when her Research Project was published at the request of the Chief Justice, Chris Kourakis. Her work is now referred to as the Ruby Preece Paper. Ruby’s Research Project topic was: What are the possible contributing factors to the over representation of Aboriginal students in the SA juvenile Justice system.
  • The Year 12 Legal Studies class distinguished themselves by winning the 2017 Mock Trials against Glenunga International High School. It was evident to the audience at both the semi-final and the final that the USC students were well prepared and supported. Although a handful of students took on the roles of barristers, witnesses, solicitors and clerks, the victory was due to the high level of collaboration, preparation and skill of the entire class. All of the students played a part in USC’s success. Anushri Goswami, won Best Barrister on the night and was also awarded an Internship with Justice Stanley. The Law Society of South Australia presents this award to an outstanding student in the 2017 Mock Trial Competition. The Honourable Justice Stanley will provide an internship for Anushri to undertake work experience in the Courts. In addition to Anuhsri’s presentation, Alicia Barron was presented with the Best Witness Award.
  • Year 12 Chemistry students participated in the National Royal Australian Chemical Institute (RACI) Competition winning the State and National Gold Medals. The winning team consisted of Revania Pillay, Zahrah Azman and Isla Heath.
  • Year 11 and 12 Drama students attended the State Theatre Company’s Mr Burns and Macbeth performances and the Slingsby’ Emil and the Detectives, furthering their knowledge of experience in the dramatic arts.
  • The Year 12 Drama production, Antigone by Joan Anouilh, which was held in Semester 1, was a great success and provided students with an opportunity to showcase their talents. In addition, the Year 11 Drama Production Shuddersome by Lindsay Price was also a great success. This production was held in Semester Two.
  • The Year 12 Art and Design Show held in November was a wonderful way to celebrate student achievement. The exhibition was a culmination of original, creative and thought provoking pieces. The students were justifiably proud of their work and the quality is a testimony of the talent in the school and wonderful support provided by the staff, particularly Michele Blackman, Mishka Ammann and Ian Corbett, (who replaced Mishka when she was on leave in Term 2). Over 100 people attended to view the art works and celebrate with staff and students. Each year two prizes are awarded to the most original art and design pieces. This year the Barr Smith Awards went to Hannah Yeomans (Art) and Alexandra Hearne (Design).
  • BDO Organisational Psychologist delivered the MBTI Personality Inventory to Year 12 Psychology students, providing them with a hands-on experience with psychometric testing.
  • The Year 12 Economics students attended a luncheon to listen to Mr Innes Willcox, CEO of the Australian Industry Group present at the SA Centre for Economics Studies. USC students were the only secondary school representatives and we thank Prof Michael O’Neil for his ongoing support, which enables our students regular attendance at this event.
  • Music students were involved in a number of community events and this year took part in the USC Cabaret Fringe Music students also provided music before Sunday services at the Scots Church in the city throughout the year.
  • 28 students were involved in the Fringe Parade. These students took part in a movement workshop with Larissa McGowan and then were part of the Fringe Night Parade. USC’s participation showcased interdisciplinary learning of the students in the Arts, Drama and Music.
  • Students in Art and Design were involved in numerous activities. In April the Year 11 and 12 Design classes visited the SACE Art Show, Light Square Gallery, where they gained inspiration from the diverse and creative art and design work exhibited.
  • In June Jeffrey Thomson, USC Old Scholar (’14), visited from London, where he is studying Fashion Design at Central Saint Martins. He conducted an informal presentation of his brilliant Folio work to the Year 12 Design classes and provided an insight to the challenges and opportunities of studying Design overseas. Year 11 Design classes also enjoyed Paolo Sebastian: X at the Art Gallery of SA, which showcased Adelaide fashion designer, Paul Vasileff’s stunning gowns.
  • Year 11 English students visited the Art Gallery as a stimulus for creative writing. This learning opportunity highlights the fact that USC’s location provides easy access to stimulating and unique learning experiences.
  • USC Old Scholar (’12), Ed Carlson, who graduated from USC five years ago, gave an informative and insightful presentation to the Year 12 Economics class. Since leaving USC, Ed has spent some years working with Google in Sydney and recently returned to Adelaide with his own tech start-up. Ed spoke to the class of the arduous process involved in gaining one of those highly sought-after positions with Google. Seven interview stages are involved, which emphasise skill and creativity in problem-solving, leadership, and ascertaining whether a candidate has the key attributes sought by that company. Ed’s experiences highlighted for the students that a combination of good interpersonal, academic and personal qualities and attributes are all vital for work in the future. He also stressed the importance of giving back to the community and the value of community service.
  • Nathan Hartman was a recipient of the Just 2 Deadly Awards, acknowledgement of Nathan’s achievement in the SACE. Nathan is one of the first Aboriginal students to graduate from USC.
  • Rory Adams was the recipient of a five week scholarship to the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Rory also has been very active on the Adelaide music scene for some time and appeared as a singer in the Adelaide Fringe Live on 5 venue at the Adelaide Oval. Rory has also embarked on an ambitious commitment to assist and support other aspiring musicians and actors. He was the Musical Director for the production of the musical Peter Pan Junior by the Adelaide Youth Theatre.
  • 14 students entered the Australian Mathematics Competition, where seven students received Distinctions and five received Credits. Distinctions were awarded to Charlie Hoffman, Yifan (Yvonne) Gao, Chenxiao Hao, Boyang (Gwen) Liu, Revania Pillay, Jenny Mulder, Taleala McCarthy, Rui (Sara) Lang and Weijia (Irene) Li. Credits were awarded to Ishratjot Singh, Qixian (Shelly) Huang, Ian Ng, Tin Vo and Dhruvil Gajjar.
  • Five Mathematics students attended a workshop hosted by The University of Adelaide targeting and encouraging women to pursue courses and careers in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics. Alicea Kavooris, Amy Brooks, Emilia Cutler, Tam Nguyen and Sarah Endlich spent the day listening to Professors from The University of Adelaide and four university students currently undertaking Mathematics courses. The program also included hands on activities – working with fractals on computer software was particularly eye opening to the endless possibilities maths offers.
  • Year 11 Physics students visited the Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing at The University of Adelaide to learn about Holey Fibres in technology.
  • Russell Schrafe, General Manager of Strategic Marketing and Fundraising at Zoos SA presented to the Year 12 English students on strategies and techniques used in advertising.
  • The SACE Music assessment performances held over a series of days at the Scots Church. It was very clear to the audiences on each occasion that the students have excelled in their chosen instruments.
  • Each year University Senior College is represented at the Australian Geography Competition. While all students are to be congratulated on their results a High Distinction was awarded to Edward Fosdike and a Credit to Bel Bevan-Davies and Leighton Elliott. At Stage 1 level, a High Distinction was awarded to Grace Russell-Jarvie and a Credit to Aiden Storer, Ishratjot Singh, Zahli Fourmy and Yiani Perentes.
  • As part of History Month, a Year 11 Politics class visited the Centre for Democracy on Kintore Avenue. This has an array of exhibits from interactive to static and provided opportunities for students to investigate this topic in novel yet educationally valuable ways with a focus on both historical and current exemplars.
  • The Year 12 Politics class benefited by three significant visits during the last week of May. Eminent Psephologist, Dr Dean Jaensch, conducted a question and answer session on Australian major political parties; Mark Parnell, Greens MLC, came across from Parliament House to conduct a session on minor political parties and finally, the class visited displays in the Centre for Democracy on Kintore Avenue. Access to such brilliant sources is, has been and will continue to be, a feature of this course and in part reflects the advantageous physical setting of University Senior College for this subject.
  • Three students of Accounting Caitlin Curran, Carlie Frantzis and Nicole Schultz and Accounting teacher, Louise Small, were invited by the Institute of Chartered Accountants to attend a formal dinner presentation at Adelaide Oval. The event featured a panel discussion from experienced business leaders, as well as one-to-one discussions with qualified Chartered Accountants where they were able to receive first hand career advice. Group activities were also completed with students from various schools to highlight the importance of strong interpersonal skills in a professional field.
  • A number of our students undertake the study of languages each year at the School of Languages. Milly Copping James was acknowledged for outstanding achievement in and received an Excellence Award for Year 12 Spanish Beginners; Gustavo Dos Santos Rezande received an Excellence Award for Year 12 Portuguese Continuers; Elizabeth George Year 12 Indonesian Continuers Merit Award and Kayla Mason received a Merit for Spanish.

Co-Curricular activities also were part of the USC calendar this year, and include the following:

  • For the fourth year in a row, a USC team entered the City to Bay Fun Run/Walk. Well done to Isla Heath, Katie Lynd, Revania Pillay, Bonnie Doran, Morris Allen, Carmen Bishop, Riley Economos, James Economos, Maree Maney and Salik Warsi.
  • 10 students donated blood for the Red Cross this year, highlighting their commitment to the community and demonstrating citizenship.
  • A group of Year 11 students raised $600 at a cake stall in the Hub during term 3 for the Red Cross Eastern African
  • Two USC students Charlotte Hillam and Brayden Roberts were selected to attend the national Schools Constitutional Convention.
  • Aidan Mackereth, a Year 11 student organised the first student led initiative for a guest speaker lecture series and invited Dr Matthew Sypek, a Nephrologist and Epidemiology Fellow to speak to a group of Year 11 and 12 students on career pathways in medicine.
  • Students volunteered to collect money for Daffodil Day, raising awareness and funds for the Cancer Foundation.
  • Twelve Year 11 and 12 students performed at a Fringe Cabaret event this year, performing poetry and music.
  • A group of Year 11 students, three staff members and three members of the USC community made over 70 trauma teddies for the Red Cross Trauma Teddy Appeal. An afternoon tea was held in November to thank the knitters and to present the teddies to the Red Cross staff.
  • A Thinker, Tinker, Maker Group began meeting in Term 3 on Thursdays at lunchtime to share their interests in coding, robotics, design, electronics and STEM. Students worked in small groups to construct laser radios.
  • The ICE (International Cultural Engagement) Program was another activity which was conducted each semester. This program is designed to assist our international students to settle into life in Adelaide and USC and to provide an opportunity for local students to develop their intercultural awareness and citizenship qualities.

USC_logo_colour_large

Posted in Achievements, International News, Local News, News | Tagged ,
Comments Off on 2017 Student Highlights

 

Revania Pillay (centre, front) delivered the 2017 Valedictory speech

Revania Pillay (centre, front) delivered the 2017 Valedictory speech

There is an old Indian adage that has been told to me multiple times throughout my life.  It outlines the order for giving reverence and goes “Matha, Pitha, Guru, Deivam,” which literally translates to “Mother, Father, Teacher, God.” It is to these four that we owe our existence.  Our mother gives birth to us and brings us into this world. They point us to our father who leads us to our teachers who bring us to God but that has a slightly different meaning in this scenario which I will get to in a second.

First, I would like to give reverence to our families, our mothers, fathers, sisters, everyone who has supported us through this year because I know that at times we would have made it very hard, but we couldn’t have got through the year without your endless encouragement.

Secondly, a respectful veneration to all the teachers here at USC.  I think I can safely say with 13 years experience that a good teacher can really make a difference. It’s your passion for your respective subjects, and your dedication to our success, that sets this school apart from all others and has inspired us to all achieve our goals.  Also, a very big thank you to the supporting staff, including the receptionists at both Jordan and Charles Street, for always being kind and helpful with everything.  Now “Mother, Father, Teacher, God,” teachers come only before God, but here God represents self-awareness as our teachers help us realise our true potential.

Revania delivering the 2017 Valedictory Speech in Elder Hall

Revania delivering the 2017 Valedictory Speech in Elder Hall

Reflecting back, this year certainly was not easy, I can attest to that and despite all the warnings that were given to us at the beginning, we still fell victim to some poor decisions.  My favourite description from a fellow student about finishing tasks this year has to be “if tomorrow is not the due date then today is not the do date.”  An accurate description of some people’s experiences throughout this year – which was one filled with excessive caffeine consumption, numerous all-nighters, mental breakdowns, seemingly endless tests and assignments.  Sounds familiar right?! Don’t worry we’ve all been there, but our experiences have all been different.  During our last teaching week at USC, I enlisted Nadia’s help to send out a survey to all of you, asking you to summarise your Year 12 experience in one word. The survey provided many good and very true responses, such as memorable, empowering and worthwhile which shows that our time at this school has allowed us to develop as self-aware individuals. The responses to the survey can be found in the word cloud at the back of your program.

One word responses to Year 12 survey

One word responses to the Year 12 survey

We all started our journeys at USC in different places, but the one thing we had in common was that entry interview where we committed to taking charge of our learning.  As part of that process we had to write an essay, as I’m sure you remember.  I chose to write about an influential person in my life, Nelson Mandela. Why him you ask? Well I am from South Africa, so he is particularly important in shaping the person I have become today.  I am a fifth generation South African Indian.  Indians were brought to South Africa over 150 years ago to work as labourers in the sugarcane plantations.  They did not have an easy life especially during apartheid, a time a racial segregation in South Africa.  Nelson Mandela played a key role in bringing an end to this and promoting freedom for all South Africans, no matter their skin colour.  He went through some unimaginable struggles but never gave up on his goal and that allowed me to grow up in a free society.  One that was very different to that which my parents grew up in.

Mandela once said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine, that the child of farmworkers can become the president of a great nation.”  We have been given a world class education at this school and there are millions of people in the world that would love the opportunities we’ve had so please don’t take it for granted. It was only because Nelson Mandela completed his education that he was able to become the president of South Africa and bring freedom to everyone. During the times of apartheid, people of colour weren’t given the same opportunities as everyone else and he was one of the rare few that completed his education.  In fact, I am a part of the second generation of South African Indian females to have finished my secondary schooling.  My mum, who is a part of the first generation, is single-handedly responsible for bringing us to Australia and she was only able to do that because she was educated.  There are many places in the world where it is much worse, and girls still aren’t being given the opportunity to get an education.  Take Pakistan for example. I’m sure many of you have heard of Malala Yousafzai.  She was the youngest recipient of the Nobel peace prize and is a Pakistani advocate for girls’ education.  Because of this she was shot by the Taliban to try and stop her efforts, but she survived and to this day still fights for her cause.

The one thing Malala and Mandela had in common is that they understood the importance of an education and that allowed them to do great things.  As Ban Ki-moon said, “Education promotes equality and lifts people out of poverty.  It teaches children how to become good citizens.  Education is not just for a privileged few, it is for everyone.  It is a fundamental human right.”

I believe that every single one of you in this room, having been given an education, can create positive change in the future.  This world already has enough Kim Kardashians and Kanye Wests, we need more Nelson Mandelas and Malala Yousafzais.  More people who are willing to make a difference.  So, when you leave today, I hope you are inspired to be that change in the world that we need because as I’ve written in countless responses this year, we are the cause of a lot of problems in the world but can also be the solution.

I would like to leave you with a quote by Jiddu Krishnamurti,

“There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning” and we have our whole lives ahead of us, so I wish you, the graduating class of 2017, everything of the best for the future and I look forward to hearing about your successes because I know you’re all capable of great things.

Thank you.

2017 USC Graduation

2017 USC Graduation

Posted in Achievements, International News, Local News, News | Tagged ,
Comments Off on 2017 Valedictory Address – Revania Pillay
USC Director of Studies, Kate Cutts

USC Director of Teaching and Learning, Kate Cutts

In September this year, Kate Cutts, Director of Teaching and Learning and Teacher of Psychology, graduated from the degree of Master of Education in the School of Education, University of Adelaide. After taking courses in leadership, negotiation and managing complex organisations, Kate undertook research for her dissertation titled: Facilitating posttraumatic growth in secondary school students: exploring the role of school leaders.

Posttraumatic growth is a term coined by Tedeschi and Calhoun during the 1990s that refers to positive psychological change experienced as a result of the struggle with highly challenging life circumstances.  Research shows that up to 70% of senior secondary students have experienced at least one event in their life that they found traumatic.  This makes studies of resilience, and indeed growth after trauma particularly salient for informing our evidence-based school programs.

Kate has continually engaged in professional learning, is a subject specialist teacher for Psychology and provides leadership to deliver the teaching and learning program.

Posted in Staff Profiles
Comments Off on USC Director of Teaching and Learning graduates as Master of Education

The Murray Bridge Community recently celebrated the success of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at the “Just 2 Deadly Awards”. These awards recognise the students graduating from Years 7 and Year 12. We were delighted that Nathan Hartman was among the recipients of these awards and that his efforts and achievements were recognised […]

Posted in Achievements, Local News, News
Comments Off on Just 2 Deadly Awards

Staff, parents, friends and students of University Senior College have collectively knitted 72 Trauma Teddies for the Red Cross charity.  On Wednesday 15 November, a few members of our Trauma Teddy knitting community were treated to afternoon tea and presented with certificates of appreciation.  Also attending were representatives from the South Australian Red Cross to personally […]

Posted in Achievements, International News, Local News, News | Tagged
Comments Off on Trauma Teddies – USC Community Knit for Red Cross

On Tuesday 31 October, the University of Adelaide’s Faculty of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Science (ECMS) students participated in the Ingenuity 2017 Showcase at the Adelaide Convention Centre.  Ingenuity 2017 is a vibrant and impressive display of student projects, research and program offerings. Former University Senior College students Jason Tosolini (2013), Samuel Bost (2012), David […]

Posted in Achievements, Local News, News, USCOSA | Tagged , ,
Comments Off on Old Scholars Participate in the Ingenuity 2017 Showcase

On Friday 20th October Senior High School and Tertiary International students from institutions all over Adelaide attended the Governor’s Farewell to International students. Seven USC Yr12 International students and five teachers of International students attended and enjoyed the event arranged and facilitated by StudyAdelaide and many sponsors of International student education. StudyAdelaide CEO Karyn Kent […]

Posted in International News
Comments Off on Governor’s Farewell to International students

USC Year 11 student Rory Adams attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music Five Week Summer Performance Program in Boston, USA in July this year on a full scholarship. This amazing opportunity allowed him to fully immerse himself in the college lifestyle taking classes in all aspects of music from the college professors. There were musicians from […]

Posted in Achievements, International News, Local News, News | Tagged
Comments Off on USC student awarded the Summer Program Scholarship at Berklee College

This year, 14 of our students participated in the Australian Mathematics Competition. We are pleased to announce that 9 students have obtained a Distinction and 5 have obtained a Credit. This event was introduced in Australia in 1978 as the first Mathematics Competition in Australian Schools. Since this time it has served almost all Australian […]

Posted in International News, Local News, News | Tagged
Comments Off on Australian Mathematics Competition 2017

ACKNOWLEDGING YOUNG CHANGE MAKERS University Senior College has begun the search for young change makers who are making a difference in the community, to nominate for the University Senior College Create Change Award, part of the Channel 9 Young Achiever Awards. “The University Senior College Create Change Award will recognise young people who are driving […]

Posted in Achievements, International News, Local News, News, USCOSA | Tagged
Comments Off on Nominations Now Open for the Channel 9 Young Achiever Awards