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Strive Methodist Ladies’ College Claremont WA

MLC students are state winners

two years running

MLC girl wins

junior Masterchef

Making a Splash The Garden of Praise

– a new uplifting and encouraging space

ISSUE 3, Semester 1 2012

A Full house

Enrolling at MLC MLC Collegian

Beats a Global Path

Contents Principal’s Perspective


Chairs of Council




Principal Cody a 40 Under 40 Winner


Strong Results


MLC Girls Are State Winners Two Years Running


Paper Work Takes on a New Meaning


Making a Splash


MLC Girl Wins Junior MasterChef


Garden of Praise


A Message from the Chair of Foundation


Nulsen Youth Patrons – One Year On


Students Respond to Need at Christmas


MLC Wins Chicago


MLC Builds Teenage Resilience and Independence




Enrolling at MLC


Advantage Mornings for All


Connecting with Families Outside Perth


Boarding Showcase


College Initiatives


Values on Canvas


Girls and Boys Join Voices


Looking Forward to the Past


Alumni Inspiration


A Message to MLC Collegians


100 Collegian Voices


Risks Worth the Taking


Per Ardua Ad Alta


Per Ardua Reconnect Campaign


A Collegian’s Journey: Bhutan and Beyond


MLC Collegian Beats a Global Path


An Entrepreneurial Spirit Adds Beauty to the Lives of Others


Women in the Media


Alumni news & events


Collegians Golf


Nedlands Plans Centenary


In Memoriam


Alumni Reunions


Front cover image: MLC Garden of Praise Photo: Lisa Embleton Back cover image: Garden of Praise

Principal ’s Perspective

The 2012 school year began with the joyous announcement of the safe, healthy and happy arrival of Principal Cody’s daughter, Eve Herczykowski, born on 2 February at 1.01pm, weighing 2.73kg. Ms Cody wishes to thank the MLC community: “This is an exciting time for our family, and we are grateful for your words and gestures of support.” Eve is thriving and enjoying the adoration of her big brother. “Jack smothers Eve with daily kisses and affectionately calls her his little sweetie, darling and love bug! I feel so blessed.”

Celebrating the Exemplary Service

of Our Outgoing Chair of Council Emeritus Professor Lesley Parker AM On 22 February, Professor Lesley Parker stood down as MLC Chair of Council after four years of service to the College. “On behalf of our school community, I extend warm appreciation to Professor Parker for her judicious leadership and inspiring example,” said Principal Cody. “Her insight has blessed the direction of our College, and undoubtedly her significant influence will remain. It has been an absolute honour to work alongside such a celebrated and skilful leader.” Professor Parker commenced her professional life as a researcher in microbiology and then became a teacher of science and mathematics in secondary

schools. Since then she has lectured in education, guided graduate students through various programs, written numerous books, chapters, articles and reports, held roles and advocacy positions in state and national governments and international organisations, received several prestigious awards and been fiercely committed to social justice, particularly in gender equality. Professor Parker is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. In 1997, she was awarded an Order of Australia for services to education, particularly the education of girls in science and mathematics, and in 2003 she received a Centenary Medal for leadership in secondary and higher education.

She has been closely involved with Uniting Church schools for many years, as a teacher, researcher, council member, parent and grandparent. “Professor Parker’s character and intellect are renowned in Australia,” said Ms Cody. “She has been my benevolent and charming mentor for the past two years and offered distinguished service and acts of love as MLC’s Chair of Council since 2008.”

Welcoming Our

New Chair of Council Dr Penelope Flett MLC extends a warm welcome to incoming Chair of Council, Dr Penny Flett. Since moving to WA in 1985, Dr Flett has held substantive positions as Medical Officer to Mount Henry Hospital, Consultant to the Health Department, and Deputy Executive Director and Director of Clinical Services, Homes of Peace (now Brightwater Care Group). In 1995, she was appointed CEO of Brightwater, which provides a wide range of services for elderly and young disabled people. Currently, Dr Flett is Pro-Chancellor at the University of Western Australia, in

addition to being a member of the Senate. She is also Chair of the WA Aged Care Advisory Council, the WA Centre for Health and Ageing Advisory Committee and the Australian Bravery Decorations Awards Council. She was a member of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA Board from 2004 to 2011. During that time she became the first woman President of CCI, and chaired the board for two years. “Dr Flett’s outstanding reputation as an innovative and compassionate businesswoman is inspiring,” said Ms Cody. “I am confident that her leadership of

Council and advice to me as Principal will be wise.” Dr Flett has been recognised for her work through the 2003 Centenary Medal for services to the aged and people with disabilities, and induction into the 2000 Business Women’s Hall of Fame and the 2011 WA Women’s Hall of Fame. She was declared Telstra Australian Business Woman of the Year in 1998, and WA Australian of the Year in 2009.

Principal Cody a 40 under 40 Winner Principal Rebecca Cody has been named one of WA’s Top 40 Business Leaders under the age of 40. In the 2012 WA Business News (WABN) 40 under 40 Awards, presented on 22 February, Ms Cody was not only placed among the 40 winners, but also received the UWA Strategic Alliance Award. “This recognition prompts me to reflect on how privileged I feel to lead MLC; I am especially proud to be part of a skilled and professional team educating girls and young women of Western Australia. Optimising the strengths and nurturing the wellbeing of our youth ultimately contributes to the state’s robust future in so many fields of endeavour. As such, my career in education is purposeful, challenging and incredibly rewarding.” Ms Cody was chosen to be among the winners due to her achievements in several areas, including her revision of MLC’s leadership model, her work in developing a philanthropic campaign, and her influence on the culture of MLC through the Preferred Education Model. WABN also noted that she has become a sought-after speaker about leadership in education, and was invited to serve on the Uniting Church’s Commission for Education, Discipleship and Leadership. Ms Cody’s participation in the ‘40 under 40’ Awards program was an MLC Foundation initiative, with Foundation Chair John Goodlad submitting the nomination. In an editorial published the following day, chair of the judging panel, WABN’s Mark Pownell, commented that “once again, the 40 under 40 awards proves that entrepreneurial people in all walks of professional life can be found wherever you look in this great state”. “I am thrilled to be one of the WA Business News 40 under 40 winners for 2012, and equally delighted to receive the Strategic Alliance Award,” said Ms Cody.

“I wish to celebrate and thank the College’s Council and my colleagues for their committed support,” said Ms Cody. “Across the past two years, their willingness to embrace change and strive to do better for the students in our care has been inspiring. I acknowledge also our families and girls; I am fortunate that our ‘paths’ have connected and treasure your partnership with MLC.”

Strong Results MLC’s 2011 graduating students achieved strong results in this year’s WACE exams. ß 100 per cent secondary graduation;

MLC students also achieved the following state rankings:

ß a median ATAR of 88.5;

ß Biological Science – 4th and 8th;

ß 96 per cent attained an ATAR in the top third of Western Australia;

ß Food Science and Technology – 4th and 5th;

ß 43 per cent achieved an ATAR greater than 90; ß 28.3 per cent studying 3A/3B course achieved 75 or better in that course; ß 1 Course Exhibition; ß 7 Certificates of Distinction; and ß 13 Certificates of Excellence.

ß one of the top seven students in Literature with a scaled score of 100; ß Marine and Maritime studies – 1st and 2nd; and ß Materials Design and Technology – 1st and 2nd. “On behalf of all staff I applaud the year group’s accomplishments and as ever, wish each student every joy in the future,” said Principal Cody.

ML C Girls Are State

Winners Two Years Running

Creative flair has seen MLC produce the top two students in the state in Materials Design and Technology – Textiles for the second year running.

“More students are realising that they can enjoy doing a practical course at a very high level. These girls don’t work from textbooks and sit numerous tests and exams. They have to work consistently throughout the year to complete a detailed design portfolio.”

The Materials, Design and Technology (MDT) course is attracting exceptional students at MLC, resulting in 2010 and 2011 leavers achieving the top two spots in the state.

At MLC the focus is on textiles, although the course embraces a wide range of materials, including metal, wood and plastics. The College has seen many students go on to enjoy success in fashion and textiles careers via prestigious courses, including those at RMIT, and arts/design courses in WA.

MDT was formally a wholly school assessed course, which meant that results did not contribute to students’ final TER scores. However, this has now changed, and MLC teacher Cheryl Lundy encourages students to regard the course as an opportunity to raise their ATAR (formerly TEE) result. In fact the top two students in 2011 scored an overall ATAR of 97.55 and 97.65. “This course is far more challenging and rewarding than many students realise”, said Mrs Lundy. “It’s all about creativity and innovation, and we have had very talented students in the group for two years running now.

In 2011 an INSTEP student enjoyed a 100% score for her portfolio, while two other students gained places in the highly regarded Fine Arts and Fashion courses at Curtin University. The two top-scoring students are pursuing Design and Science courses at UWA. “It is a testament to MLC that girls doing courses with an emphasis in the arts or sciences are also involved in sports and practical courses such as MDT,” said Mrs Lundy, who has been involved in

the development of the course from its inception, contributing to committees and working parties for the Curriculum Council of WA. She believes this has led to a deep understanding of the course requirements that enables her to maintain high standards. However, she cites the students’ abilities and attitudes as the primary reason for their success. “At MLC girls genuinely support and encourage one another. They give one another great feedback, offer praise and learn to critique work in a positive way, while accepting criticism in the right spirit.” MLC students also achieved first and second spots in the State for Marine and Maritime Studies in 2011, and had the top student in 2010. This information was not published, as there were fewer than 100 students taking the course in WA. Emily Ward (left) and Danika Zuidersma with some of the pieces that won them top marks in WA. Photo courtesy of the Community Newspaper Group

Paper Work Takes Making a Splash on a New Meaning

Year 10 and 11 students created wearable paper gowns with hand painted and printed decoration for Arts Week 2011. The Visual Arts students drew inspiration from Belgian paper artist Isabella de Borchgrave to create the garments. Their work was based on research into the traditional textiles and costumes of the countries of the Silk Road, and as depicted in famous paintings from the Baroque and Romantic periods.

When a group of MLC families put together an informal water polo team in 2009, Millie Martino could not have predicted the path this would open up for her. Three years on, she is playing for Australia, and hopes to be picked for the U18 Australian Team competing at the World Championships at the end of 2012. “If I don’t get selected for the Championships, I have one more year to give it a go, so I’ll definitely try again,” said Millie, whose calm determination has undoubtedly helped her achieve her best. In 2011, Millie travelled to Italy, Greece and Hungary with the Under 18 Australian Team. “We underwent training in Italy, then in Greece we competed against six other countries for the first time as a team. In Hungary, we had more training. The experience enabled us to improve significantly and to understand how each opponent team has a different style of play,” said Millie. Millie’s water polo journey began when the WAIS (Western Australian Institute of Sport) Women’s Water Polo coach observed the Year 9s playing at Claremont Pool, asked Millie to join the WAIS squad and offered her a scholarship. This led to participation in the U14 Club Nationals, where the team won gold, followed by U16s, U18s and U20s interstate competitions. In 2010, the Australian team coach selected an Australian Talent Identification squad from the U16s team and held a training camp for them from which two teams were chosen to participate in the Pan Pacific Tournament in New Zealand. Once again, Millie was among those chosen. Some of the girls playing in those two teams were then chosen to join the national team for the European trip in mid 2011. “We will be playing an U18s competition in April, followed by a training camp. The Championship team will be picked after that,” said Millie. Whether she plays in the World Championships or not, Millie is keen to take her career in water polo as far as she can, combining it with university studies next year.

ML C Girl Wins Junior MasterChef Year 6 MLC student, Greta Yaxley, was crowned Junior MasterChef 2011 in the concluding episode of the popular Channel 10 series last November. Greta is the first Perth contestant to win the title, bringing home a prize of $15,000. How did she feel at the winning moment? “Numb!” said Greta. “It didn’t really register for a while – in fact it probably took about a month for me to realise what had happened – it just didn’t feel real.” Even reaching the top 50 was an achievement that Greta had not anticipated: “It was the best thing ever, and I would have been happy with just that,” she declared. “It wasn’t until I was in the final four that I realised I might actually win!”

Photos: courtesy of Shine (Aust) Pty Ltd

It wasn’t until I was in the final four that I realised I might actually win!

Back at school, her fellow students were excited and overjoyed for Greta, congratulating her in true MLC spirit, while Greta’s natural humility kept her feet firmly on the ground. “To be ‘crowned’ Junior MasterChef 2011 is a phenomenal tribute to Greta’s culinary skills, as well as her refined problem-solving strategies and persistence,” commented Principal Cody. “Across the series, and in our interactions since then, I have been most impressed by her humility and graciousness. These are remarkable qualities and ones that I know will continue to flourish.” When she entered the competition, Greta had plans to become a chef, and her training began sooner than she had expected: after mentioning that one of her inspirations is Alain Fabregues of The Loose Box in Mundaring, the

chef invited Greta to cook with him during the summer holidays. Greta spent a full day at the prestigious restaurant, watching at first, and then helping to prep meals. “It was fantastic meeting Alain,” Greta enthused. “I already had his recipe book and I look at it all the time. I particularly enjoyed making petits fours, and learning how to use a blow torch, which was a little bit scary! Mum and Dad came for dinner in the evening, and I was allowed to join them for dessert – we ordered everything, and the staff made a special dish just for me.” Another highlight for Greta since winning the competition has been giving demonstrations for children in hospital: “I made the cupcakes for them that I had made in America during the show – but prettier,” she said. Greta’s love of cooking began at home, where her parents allowed her to indulge in ‘experimental cooking’. She found that unusual tastes appealed to her, and that she could use her sense of smell to work out what flavours would work well together. Now in Year 7, she will be taking Food Science and Technology as one of her subjects, but is less certain that becoming a chef is her ambition. “Working at the Loose Box taught me how stressful the job is – it’s a lot of hard work!” said Greta.

Garden of Praise

A seed planted at the MLC Prayer Group has grown into a gift for the whole College community – named by students as the Garden of Praise.

Speaking on behalf of the Prayer Group – a gathering of MLC parents who meet once a fortnight – Mrs Jo Court explained: “The original idea was to create a place for inspirational verse – an uplifting, encouraging, quiet space for girls, teachers and families.” The area chosen for the garden, beside the Middle Years’ Building, was under-utilised and dominated by a dark, unattractive brick wall at the back of Langsford House. Now the wall is graced by a stunning piece of trompe l’oeil artwork created by Graeme Miles Richards. “Graeme is truly gifted and his work inspirational,” said Jo Court. “He even involved some of the girls in impromptu painting of flowers and leaves, and I am sure we will have even more budding artists amongst the girls as the artwork awakens and inspires new talents and skills.”

The painting sets a magnificent backdrop to the garden, which runs alongside the Middle Years’ Building adjoining Christ Church Grammar School, right down to the top of the riverbank. At the far end is an arched seating area that offers a space for speeches, small performances and even wedding ceremonies. “The completion of MLC’s Garden of Praise is an historic event for our school,” said Principal Cody. “Not only is it a striking example of philanthropy, but this new space of peace and beauty will be enjoyed by our entire community for various purposes: weddings and functions are obvious uses, but perhaps more significant will be the private moments of contemplation that individuals spend there.” Although the original garden concept germinated in the Prayer Group meetings, it soon grew to involve several members of the MLC community and beyond.

“We involved anyone who even blinked as they walked past,” said Jo. “The day the large trees arrived, we gathered six men who were on their merry way somewhere else to assist in tree planting and hauling. The task was completed brilliantly!” “Mere thoughts and ideas started to take form and materialize, and help seemed to arrive so many times at just the right time. The Prayer Group is a small handful of individuals who ‘believed’, and what you see today is a result of that belief, a few leaps of faith, plus some energy and joyful efforts.” The garden takes the visitor on a meandering path of recycled pavers, under arches of grape vines and wisteria, to the last of the arches where the eye rests on a refreshing river view. “The aim was low maintenance, low water use and a usable space,” said Jo. “Plants were chosen to provide fragrance, beauty and significance. The ‘Father’s Love’ rose

A Message from the Chair of Foundation

Thank You

The MLC Prayer Group wishes to thank the following for their generosity: Graeme Miles Richards for his time and talent; Chris from for the ironwork; Ceri and Monique at Empire Lane for their vision and guidance; MLC Maintenance Staff for their time, energy and patience; Mike Shaw, Operations Manager, for his support, knowledge and approvals; Barry Burgess and his gardening team for all of their support and encouragement; Steve Baxter, a keen gardener who donated plants, time and energy; MLC staff, family members and friends who were roped in to help. Finally, to our inspirational Principal and mother of two, thank you for your encouragement and support of this project.

was chosen for its name and colour, jasmine for fragrance and shade, the grape vine to signify the teaching of ‘the true vine’. Verbena means ‘pray for me’, and wisteria means ‘welcome’. We also added flag iris to prompt contemplation of the Trinity, ‘Moses in the Cradle’ for its purple colour, and the one that delights the girls most, ‘Lambs’ Ears’ – the leaves really do feel like lambs’ ears and some girls have asked if the plants are real!” The garden needs to be visited more than once, as each time the visitor notices another detail, from plants to decorative items, bible verses to wrought iron, and even a hidden door. The ironwork was generously donated by a man who wishes to remain anonymous. Although not associated with MLC, the idea of a prayer/bible area to be enjoyed by the girls appealed to him, and he was only too happy to create and adapt pieces to fit the space.

I wish to acknowledge the ongoing support from our community – parents, staff and Collegians – for the fundraising campaigns facilitated by the MLC Foundation. It is because of you that MLC is able to maintain its position as a leading school for girls with first class facilities. The Foundation is also taking an increasing role in developing the Scholarship and Bursary Program for the College, enabling students from varied walks of life to benefit from the excellent education provided by MLC. Reflective of the philanthropic culture at MLC, our new Garden of Praise is an extraordinary story of generosity and dedication, and I would like to add my thanks to all those who have dedicated resources and time to this new facility. In addition, I am most grateful to former MLC Principal, Dr Geoff Hadley, who is donating a portion of the proceeds from sales through MLC of his memoir, Risks Worth the Taking, to the Foundation. MLC has benefited enormously from the philanthropic efforts of all our donors, which are certainly appreciated by all. Continued support for the Building and Scholarship Programs at MLC is essential, and I would appeal to you to consider your role in the future of MLC’s young women, either by making tax deductible donations or through contribution of time or resources. Finally I would like to acknowledge the Foundation Board. This great team has worked hard to ensure that our investment management, fundraising skills and corporate governance are second to none. Please give generously so that MLC can maintain its status as one of the most sought-after schools for girls and young women.

John R Goodlad Chair, ML C Foundation

The overall design of the garden was created by Empire Lane, a garden design company, at no charge to the school. The company assisted with the location of trees and pausing places where visitors may sit and rest, or contemplate a piece of inspirational text. “The words were always the core, the main focus to give hope, strength and guidance,” said Jo. “We trust the girls will benefit from the words throughout their school lives and beyond.”

Nulsen Youth Patrons – One Year On

In the previous edition of STRIVE, we reported on the recruitment of four Youth Patrons from MLC by disability support service, Nulsen. One year on, the girls have spoken enthusiastically about how their expectations have been exceeded. In Semester 1 of 2011, Year 10 students Alice Angeloni, Jia Ying Kho, Lucy Moyle and Laura Wilkinson were invited to become Nulsen Youth Patrons for 2011. Nulsen is a not-for-profit organisation providing accommodation and 24 hour support to people with a range of disabilities, including intellectual, physical and acquired brain injury. The Youth Patron Program aims to develop public speaking and leadership skills while increasing knowledge of disability. “We have been able to help the Nulsen residents in unexpected ways,” said Alice. “Rather than give practical assistance, we were able to spend time communicating, dancing and generally having fun with them – we felt we were helping to make them happy.” The girls said they were greatly inspired by the residents, many of whom have overcome some real challenges. “Nulsen normalises what could easily become a boring existence for many residents,” said Alice. “It isn’t just about practical care – their whole lifestyle is considered.”

...Nulsen is about helping people to be accepted in the community – and we got to help with the transition.


The objectives of the Youth Patron Program include developing leadership and public speaking skills, increasing awareness among students and the wider community about disability issues and people living with a disability, and promoting the work of Nulsen through fundraising and educational activities. The MLC Patrons have been visiting Nulsen homes and receiving training in public speaking and encouragement to develop leadership skills in a community service context. At a winter cocktail party, the girls met staff, residents and their families, and Alice made a speech at a staff ball towards the end of the year, drawing on the skills she had learned in the two public speaking classes. “There were over 350 staff, family and corporate sponsors at the event,” said Alice. “It was a frightening experience, but I think it went well.” The ball included awards to Nulsen staff: “It was good to hear about what the staff do at Nulsen and the impact they have,” commented Laura. The girls also spoke at a High Tea for local businesswomen and to the Year 10 students at MLC, who participated in a Lapathon organised by the Patrons to raise funds to purchase iPads for residents. “It was great to get the girls into the spirit for the Lapathon,” said Jia. “I felt proud of my year!” Another six girls were elected as Youth Patron Committee Members, providing a supporting role to the Patrons throughout the Program in 2011. They played a big part

in organising the Lapathon and are now helping to get one more event off the ground before passing the baton to the current Year 10s. “We are planning a fashion parade fundraiser this term, and will be visiting more residents and talking at assembly before we hand over to the next Patrons in Term 2,” said Alice. She summed up the benefits to the Patrons themselves from participating in the program: “It was just that we were doing something good, raising money, and seeing a side of our community that we hadn’t had much contact with before. Nulsen is about helping people to be accepted in the community – and we got to help with the transition.” MLC teacher Suzy Bayne, who coordinated the Youth Patron Program with Nulsen observed that the girls had developed in empathy and maturity as a result of their participation. “They have shown real compassion, and have been wonderful in helping residents to enjoy their visits to MLC for events such as our Heather Lamont Arts Festival and our Sports Carnival,” said Ms Bayne. “I was particularly impressed by the girls’ initiative in raising $3,500 from a Lapathon for two iPads which they presented to two of the residents. These computers have been customised with apps that enable the residents to use them more easily – an initiative that has made a significant difference to their quality of life.” The Youth Patrons were chosen on the basis of applications and interviews held jointly between Nulsen and MLC.

Students Respond to Need at Christmas MLC students responded to those in need of a helping hand at Christmas, through UnitingCare West’s Operation Santa program. For their Community Service Project in Term 4, the Year 9s at MLC researched ways to help the disadvantaged in Perth. “We put together toiletries boxes to donate to the Tranby Drop-in Centre, which is part of the Operation Santa Program,” said Jenny Martino, Head of Year 9 at MLC.

“The Year 9s also held cake stalls every Thursday at morning recess to raise money for this cause.”

hampers were distributed throughout WA. In 2011, a total of 1,477 hampers were requested, and the target was met.

The girls made 80 toiletries hampers in total for distribution by UnitingCare West to those in need, such as disadvantaged children, homeless teenagers, families in crisis and lonely older people.

“The majority of the recipients were part of our family service programs, though a lot of individuals came from our program that assists adults with intellectual disabilities (Rainbow) and our homeless centre (Tranby),” said Uniting Care West’s Annalisa Chin.

Each year, UnitingCare West works with Target stores throughout WA, the Uniting Church schools, congregations and corporate donors to produce hampers for those who are in genuine need of assistance. In 2012, more than 1,300

Since the appeal started, over 1.7 million Australians have received an unexpected gift for Christmas.

ML C Wins Chicago Theatre Arts teacher Ms Suzy Bayne considers it an honour for MLC to be one of the first schools in Australia to win the right to perform the musical, Chicago. “We chose Chicago, and battled for the performance rights, because we believe it is an excellent opportunity to showcase Dance, Drama and Music equally,” said Ms Bayne, who will be directing the musical. A jazz club set will be created in MLC’s performing arts theatre, Hadley Hall, with MLC’s prestigious Jazz Band on stage at all times. The band and singers will be coached by specialist jazz teacher Galina Bratanova. Costumes will be created in-house by staff and students for a cast of 50, and a backstage crew will be made up from students in Years 7-12. Chicago will be MLC’s major production for 2012, performed over three nights from 9-11 August by students in Years 10-12, and is expected to draw a crowd. Photo courtesy of the POST Newspaper

“The musical has very strong leading female roles, and familiar songs and storyline that people will want to come along and see performed,” said Ms Bayne. “The biggest challenge for the girls will be to remain faithful to well-known and well-loved songs.” Booking information will be posted on the MLC website later this year.


ML C Builds

Teenage Resilience and Independence A brand new residential program at MLC aims to build resilience and independence in teenage girls. Year 9 girls are invited to stay in the MLC Boarding House for two, four, six or eight weeks, for a co-curricular experience that will grow their personal, social and academic skills. Parents are all too aware of the challenges faced by teenage girls, and the need to guide and protect them while building resilience and facilitating their intellectual, social and emotional development. In his writings on the needs of adolescents, Clinical Psychologist Andrew Fuller stresses the need to “bombard them with positive experiences”. He explains that “the adolescent brain is not only tumultuously emotional, it is also incredibly social,” and that adolescents tend to “seek out new stimuli, novelty and risk”. He suggests that the brain develops best when allowed to play, linger and persist in areas of interest, and stresses the need to help young people “to develop the habits


and routines that allow them to work smarter, not harder”. The Year 9 Residential Program at Methodist Ladies’ College aims to address some of the needs of Year 9 girls, by placing them in a social situation where they will learn to care for themselves, improve their personal organisation, manage their finances, live with others, explore spirituality and understand healthy sleep and study routines. Their stay in the Boarding House also includes stimulating co-curricular activities that offer a level of ‘safe risk’, such as horse riding, surfing lessons, skippers ticket training, sailing and kayaking. MLC has been a Boarding House since its foundation over 100 years ago. Already offering a wide range of activities and support, the benefits of temporary residential placements to teenage girls in particular led the school to establish the new program for 2012.

Places are limited to a maximum of 20 – large enough to be social but not so large as to be overwhelming for girls who are not used to staying away from home. Places are currently available for programs in Terms 2 and 3 of this year. The cost of the Year 9 Residential Program is $435 per week, and includes recreational activities (with transport to and fro), health care, meals and snacks, school uniforms and bedding laundered weekly, and tutor fees. Girls will also enjoy after-hours access to campus facilities, including wireless Internet. To find out more about this exciting initiative, parents are encouraged to book a place on one of four Family Information Nights, with dinner in the Boarding House followed by a tour of our facilities. Contact MLC Director of Boarding, Elaine Riley, on 9383 0253 or

Enrolling at ML C There is a very high demand for places at Methodist Ladies’ College, so if you are considering enrolling your daughter, we encourage you to apply well ahead of your desired year of entry. We offer places three years out, which means that this year we are offering places to students entering in 2015. Intake years are Kindergarten, Years 5, 7 and 10. From 2013 there will be two classes from Kindergarten to Year 4, then two more classes are added at Year 5, and two more again at Year 7. Year 10 places are more limited and subject to availability. Occasionally a place may become available in another year level, as WA has a relatively transient population and girls do move on from time to time. If we don’t have a place available for your daughter, we will endeavour to find her a place at the next possible entry point. To find out about availability, please contact Admissions.

When it comes to securing a place, we prioritise applications from siblings of current students, daughters of Collegians, boarders, daughters of Uniting Church Ministers or MLC staff, and families relocating from overseas or interstate according to date of application. We also look carefully at whether your daughter will benefit from our academic programs and demonstrates a willingness to participate in the full range of activities we offer. A full explanation of the enrolment process appears in our Enrolment Policy. This is available on our website in the Admissions section under Fees and Regulations. Do check this again before applying, as it is subject to change. Most importantly, please tell us if your contact details change – particularly your email address.


Connecting with

We understand that finding the right school for your daughter is crucial, and that a school’s environment and standard of education have a lasting impact on her future.

Families outside Perth can connect with MLC and find out more about boarding by attending a field day. Here, you will have the opportunity to meet our Director of Boarding, Elaine Riley, our Admissions Registrar, Audrey Smith or our Principal, Rebecca Cody, and have your questions answered.

A visit to the College will enable you and your daughter to see firsthand what it means to be a student at MLC.

Come and meet us at:

We would therefore like to invite you to an MLC Advantage Morning - an opportunity for you to hear from our Principal, watch some of our girls perform, and tour the Campus to see the range of facilities that the College offers.

ß Dowerin Field Days: 29-30 August

Please contact Admissions to book your place at one of the following Advantage Mornings, or to arrange a private tour if these dates are not suitable for you:

Contact Our Admissions Team

Mornings for All

ß Tuesday 1 May ß Friday 22 June ß Wednesday 5 September

Families Outside Perth

ß FeNaCING Festival, Karratha: 4-5 August ß Newdegate Field Days: 5-6 September ß Mingenew Field Days: 20-21 September

For Advantage Morning bookings, to arrange a private tour, or for any enrolment enquiries, please contact Admissions: (08) 9384 4000

ß Wednesday 31 October


Boarding Showcase Our Boarding House is continually being maintained with new furnishings, fresh paint, upgraded appliances and air conditioning. Here we share with Strive readers some of the latest images showcasing our facilities to potential students and their families.

Boarding House Each MLC boarder is encouraged to create a homely environment in her bedroom, with posters, photographs, favourite cuddly toys, books and other belongings. All common rooms have colour TV, lounge chairs and a kitchen attached where students can prepare snacks and weekend breakfasts. Several PCs, printers, scanners and wireless Internet connection are available throughout the Boarding House, and students are welcome to bring their own laptops.

Director of Boarding Director of Boarding Elaine Riley encourages a strong partnership between school and home. Active responsibility is taken for the welfare of every student, with support offered by the Chaplain, Counsellors and Health Sisters, while Year and House teachers, leaders and tutors watch over the personal and social welfare of small groups of girls.


Campus Facilities Campus facilities include the Walter Shepherd Resource Centre, which contains our library, IT department and several areas for students to study and relax. The Meredith Taylor Health & Sports Centre, opened in 2011, is a multi-level, multi-purpose facility, housing national standard courts, weights and group fitness room, rowing ergo room and group teaching facilities.

Health and Recreation Our Recreation Officer is dedicated to providing appropriately supervised weekend activities for boarders, including trips to the zoo, galleries, markets, beaches, cinemas, theatres and restaurants. On campus, girls enjoy the pool and gym facilities, exercise and dance classes, art, cooking, sports and more. Delicious healthy meals are always provided at MLC, we encourage students to try a wide variety of food, and special dietary needs are catered for. Breakfast and dinner are served in the Dining Room. Morning, afternoon tea and supper are also provided, and a selection of fresh fruit is always available. Contact us to request a Prospectus or arrange a tour of the campus. 356 Stirling Highway, Claremont WA 6010 T: 08 9384 4000 E: W:


Values on Canvas

L to R: Christian Foundations, Courage, Diversity, Striving, Respect

In Semester 2 of 2011, Year 6 students were commissioned with the task of creating five large paintings that communicated each of the College Values. To convey these abstract concepts, the students first explored ways to paint feelings using only line, shape or colour. Inspired by the work of the Abstract Expressionists and of Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky in particular, they generated individual ideas for their artwork based on a study of the etymology of key words. Collectively the students selected elements from their artworks to include in the final piece and worked on different parts of the painting together. These large artworks were displayed as the backdrop images for the Junior Years’ (Barclay) Concert and are now on permanent display in the newly refurbished Bosisto Hall.


RESPECT for self, others and the

Community spirit, which celebrates DIVERSITY

re = back or again + specere = look at

divertere = turned different ways + ity = the state of; the quality of


re + spect = to look again respect: a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements

STRIVING to make the most of

divers + ity = state of difference; unique features; variety; contradiction; turning in different ways diversity: the state of being diverse; variety

individual gifts

CHRISTIAN foundations in life

strive: c.1200, from Old French estriver = to quarrel, dispute

Christ = the anointed one + ian = relating to

striving: make great efforts to achieve or obtain something

Christ + ian = relating to the ‘anointed one’, the liberator, the saviour

COURAGE, resilience and

Christian: showing qualities such as kindness, helpfulness, and concern for others.


cour = of the heart + age = act of; state of cour + age = act of the heart; state of the heart courage: Strength of mind and heart, the ability to do something that frightens one

The College would sincerely like to acknowledge and thank Margot Teusner for her inspiration and efforts in coordinating this project and bringing it to fruition.

Girls and Boys Join Voices As this edition of Strive goes to print, a new choir is forming, combining the voices of MLC girls and Christ Church Grammar School (CCGS) boys. Yet to be named, the choir is a joint co-curricular initiative between the schools. MLC Director of Music, Mr Bobby Gallo, anticipates around 40 voices will be recruited following the recent auditions, with an even split between boys and girls, drawn from Years 7-12.

“We aim to develop an outstanding ensemble that will allow students from both schools to experience mixed four-part singing at the highest level,” said Mr Gallo. The choir will sing at the MLC Semester 1 and 2 Concerts, and Mr Gallo hopes to enter the ensemble in competitions later this year. “Once the choir is firmly established, our goal is to offer this ensemble national and international performance opportunities,” he added.

Looking Forward to the Past In late 2011 a scrapbook rescued from the rubbish was donated to MLC Archives. Despite its rather poor condition, it contains a unique snapshot of an MLC Boarder (1963-64) and an era.

Photographs, articles clipped from the local paper, hair samples from friends, bus tickets, invitations to social events and uniform pockets are a few of the items that were carefully chosen and pasted onto pages. For Archives, these types of objects are invaluable but also fraught with difficulties over concerns over conservation, preservation, storage and display. With improved innovations of information storage however, some of these concerns are lessened with the ability to scan objects and material to be accessed in a myriad of

different ways. This enables fragile objects such as a scrapbook to be handled less and accessed, at least digitally, often. This year marks 20 years of Archives at MLC. First proposed in 1992, MLC now has a comprehensive collection of primary historical records as well as photographs, memorabilia, uniforms and the odd scrapbook. While this collection is a primary source for historical research it is also hoped

that by utilising some of the technologies available, MLC archives can create a collection that is fully accessible to students, staff and the general public. After 105 years of school history and 20 years of official Archives, it is time to move forward towards accessing the past. If you would like to donate items relevant to MLC please contact Michelle on 9383 0314. MLC Archives is open Monday and Thursday 9.30am–4.00pm and Wednesday 9.30am–2.00pm.

Michelle Campbell, ML C Archivist


A Message to

ML C Collegians Dear Collegians, Welcome to 2012. I hope the year has started off brilliantly for you. I would like to extend my ‘thank you’ to those Collegians who participated in the Pop-Up MLC AGM exhibition. The afternoon was very pleasant and it is always amazing to see the wide variety of talent among Collegians. I would also like to extend a ‘thank you’ to the members of the Committee who retired this year and a big welcome to the new members; I look forward to the coming year. In 2013 the MLC Collegians’ Association Inc is turning 100! As one of the oldest girl schools in the state, this is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate all that is MLC with Collegians, past, present and future. In order to make the year a wonderful success we are looking for volunteers to assist in the planning of these events: ß Boarder Sleepover ß Garden Party/High Tea ß Cocktail Party Volunteering is not necessarily time-consuming; many levels of involvement are possible. Do you know a Collegian who spends their time volunteering or making an outstanding contribution to the community in a range of fields? If so, please nominate them for 100 Collegian Voices, a collection of life stories to be released in our Centenary year. For more details on 2013 events, volunteering opportunities or to download a copy of the 100 Collegian Voices nomination form, please contact Tamara Kilian (Alumni Relations) at tkilian@ or on 9383 8851, or refer to the MLC website: www.

Chelsea Gallash President, ML C Collegians’ Association PO Box 222, Claremont, WA 6910 0431 820 932 (Chelsea Gallash) 9383 8851 (Alumni Relations)


100 Collegian Voices In celebration of its centenary in 2013 the MLC Collegians’ Association is producing a book entitled 100 Collegian Voices. The book will commemorate the lives of 100 MLC Collegians who have made significant contributions to society based on life achievements in sport, science, arts, academia, career, business or leadership, Community Service in the form of organisational membership or voluntary contribution, and advocacy as a Collegian. Judy Tennant (Dunstan ’68) has been appointed Chair of the 100 Collegian Voices Selection Panel, which will adjudicate on the selection of the 100 Collegians to be featured in the book. Judy is a member of the Collegians’ Association and of the MLC Council outside of her occupation as Chief of Staff to Hon. Robyn McSweeney, Minister for Child Protection. Her life experience and connection with the College will prove to be invaluable in ensuring a fair decision-making process. Judy believes that MLC Collegians deserve to be acknowledged for their successes and that 100 Collegian Voices provides the perfect outlet. “100 Collegian Voices will provide an illustration of students who have honoured the College vision: Per Ardua Ad Alta; through striving to the heights,” she said. “The publication will provide a depiction of the excellence that is established and cultivated in MLC students who have gone on to achieve great things.” Nominations close on 30 April so please submit your nomination as soon as possible. If you would like a copy of the nomination form, please contact Tamara Kilian (Alumni Relations) at the College. Please don’t assume that the person you are considering has already been nominated; the number of nominations an individual receives will have an effect on the selection process.

Risks Worth the Taking Former MLC Principal Dr Geoff Hadley has recently completed publishing his memoirs, Risks Worth the Taking. Dr Hadley’s life and career were filled with diverse experiences, from growing up on a dairy farm in Waroona to working in New York before joining MLC, where he spent 20 years as Principal. Dr Hadley acknowledges the risks the MLC Council took in inviting him to become Principal in early 1972. He began his leadership in 1973 and it became clear that the risk had paid off, as he had a profound effect on the College, his colleagues, students, parents and the school community. The book’s Foreword, written by Reverend Ken Williams (Moderator of the Uniting Church in Western Australia 2008–11), demonstrates the fondness Dr Hadley’s students had for him and the attachment they formed with the College under his leadership: “One of the most significant things that I have come to understand about Geoff has been revealed to me through others. During

my years as the Minister of St Andrews and Ross Memorial Churches I conducted many weddings and regularly found myself encountering young women who had been students of Methodist Ladies’ College during Geoff’s time as Principal. I discovered they knew themselves affectionately as ‘Doc Hadley’s girls’. More recently I found the same thing whilst travelling throughout Western Australia as Moderator, this time usually through mothers whose daughters had been at Methodist Ladies’ College. ‘So your daughter must have been one of Doc Hadley’s girls?’ I would ask, to be greeted with the same warm smile and enthusiastic affirmation.” Copies of Risks Worth the Taking are available from the College for $25.00. If you would like to purchase a copy, please contact the MLC Office of Development and Communications. Dr Hadley is arranging for a portion of the sale of his books to be generously donated to the MLC Foundation.

Per Ardua Ad Alta Per Ardua Reconnect Campaign

Dear Per Ardua Members and Friends,

2012 welcomes another year of the Per Ardua Association’s successful Coffee and a Chat series of meetings and events, where we will continue to play host to a number of interesting guest speakers. Our events consist of the annual Welcome Brunch, Musicale and Christmas Luncheon, which provide ideal opportunities to revisit the College in a social capacity. We were proud to host the launch of Dr Geoff Hadley’s memoirs, Risks Worth the Taking, at our first event of the year, the Per Ardua Welcome Brunch. Many Collegians, current and past MLC staff, and the wider community came together to congratulate Dr Hadley on his remarkable achievement. It was wonderful to reconnect with old friends and colleagues at this event and the Christmas Luncheon last November. All members of the MLC community are invited to attend Per Ardua functions; I would be glad to continue to reconnect and welcome new faces this year.

The Per Ardua Association recently launched a Reconnect Campaign to allow past staff members, past parents and grandparents to reconnect with the College through the Association’s meetings and events. Below are dates for 2012. If you would like to join us, please contact Alumni Relations Coordinator Tamara Kilian at the College on 9383 8851 or at Thursday 17 May: Thursday 5 July: Wednesday 22 August: Thursday 13 September: Thursday 15 November:

Meeting Annual General Meeting Per Ardua Musicale Meeting Meeting followed by Christmas Lunch

Fay Woods President, Per Ardua Association


A Collegian’s Journey:

Bhutan and Beyond Since publishing their luscious book, Bhutan Heartland, in October 2010, Libby Lloyd (’63) and her husband, photographer Robert van Koesveld, have enjoyed many conversations and presentations about this fascinating and colourful country. These developed into the pair leading a photographic tour to Bhutan last November.

We asked ourselves the basic question of how to maintain the balance between materialism and spiritualism in the course of getting the immense benefits of science and technology.


Mention Bhutan, and many will recall ‘Gross National Happiness’ – a phrase introduced by Bhutan’s King Jigme Singye Wangchuck in 1972 to signal his commitment to building an economy based on Buddhist values. The King’s strategy intrigued the world and now attracts international research conferences. It is based upon four pillars: sustainable and equitable socio-economic development, conservation of environment, preservation and promotion of culture, and the promotion of good governance. Yet despite the benefits of never having been colonised, Bhutan now faces great challenges in maintaining its spiritual and

cultural integrity and its pristine environment in a modern world. As their wise Prime Minister said, “We asked ourselves the basic question of how to maintain the balance between materialism and spiritualism in the course of getting the immense benefits of science and technology.” The Switzerland-sized Himalayan country lies between the giants of China and India – a location that has been crucial in the creation of its extraordinary beauty and colourful Buddhist culture, as well as its unprecedented peaceful transition from a feudal society to a modern democracy.

Libby Lloyd and Robert van Koesveld on their hike up to Taktshang Gompa, Bhutan’s famous Tigers Nest monastery. These three friends will benefit from Bhutan’s emphasis on increasing Gross National Happiness. Paro dzong and watchtower, one of many fortresses in Bhutan Girls (long uniform) and boys (short uniform) walking to school learn some new finger games from Libby.

The Himalayas provide protection for villages in deep valleys surrounded by mountain forests. Tibetans to the north introduced Buddhism in the 7th century, and the Chinese invasion of Tibet gave India the impetus to help Bhutan build its first roads in the 1960s. The Indians to the south also helped introduce schooling in the 1960s, with English as the primary language of education: this is why we often meet Bhutanese postgraduate students in Perth universities. The first Bhutanese person Robert and I met was Nima, in Perth 2008. Nima was completing his Masters in Counselling here so that when he returned to Bhutan he could

train student teachers to respond more effectively to troubled students. When he heard that Robert and I were about to visit his homeland for the first time, Nima was keen for us to take gifts to his parents and younger brother in their tiny village in central Bhutan. So that April we found ourselves having tea in his parents’ home and having the first of many marvellous conversations about life in feudal Bhutan. Nima’s father, Ap Sonam, had once supervised the collection of harvest taxes from remote parts of the estate for the local lord. When the serfs were liberated in the late 1950s and the aristocrats’ land redistributed,

Ap Sonam’s life was transformed too, as he then became a humble farmer and village headman. Although Nima’s youngest brother has followed his parents into farming life, his older brother is a veterinarian in the capital, Thimphu, and his twin brother is the key political interviewer for their national television channel. Such extraordinary stories of generational change are one of the delights of Bhutan, along with the captivating beauty of the people, their culture and the landscape. We have travelled a great deal, but Bhutan stole our hearts.



Monks swirl in the blackhat dance to purify the space at the beginning of the annual Paro festival

As a result of others seeing Robert’s gorgeous photographs from that trip and to our delighted surprise, we were invited by Fremantle Press to create a book about our travels. This gave us an excuse to return to Bhutan for a month to interview people and fill in some of the gaps. Creating our first book together was an adventure in itself, as we emailed ideas to each other from one side of the house to the other, researching the facts, consulting with the designer and editor at Fremantle Press and finally choosing 200 photos from the 20,000 we had taken. On our photographic tour late last year, it was especially fascinating to observe the different ways the 12 guests ‘met’ Bhutan through photography, laughter, spirituality, conversations, hiking and, yes, shopping. Meeting the friendly Bhutanese in the villages, fields and townships gives so many opportunities for fascinating conversations about how ordinary people are adjusting


to the extraordinary changes of the last 50 years. What was life like when there were serfs and tenant farmers? How has electricity changed village life? What leads someone to become a monk? What are students’ dreams for life after they graduate? How is the skill of weaving such intricate silk cloth learned? How does a yak herder’s daughter get schooling? Two experiences at MLC reinforced my life-long fascination with other societies: Walter Shepherd’s marvellous classes in Comparative Religion and my graduation book received from ‘Shep’ on our final Speech Night of 1963 – On Safari by Armand Denis. My dream then was to marry an anthropologist! Thank goodness our own society changed over that next decade to enable young women to be anthropologists themselves. However, my career took me through four decades as a social worker (including more than 20 years at KEMH and PMH) until, in

2006, it was finally time to leave work and give creativity and cross-cultural adventures more priority in my life. What a delight now to be able to travel frequently with my husband (a retired psychotherapist) and to have created my own ‘National Geographic’ moment by writing a book about beautiful Bhutan including Robert’s stunning photos. Sometimes our dreams can take us into surprising places. Libby Lloyd and photographer Robert van Koesveld co-authored Bhutan Heartland – travels in the Land of the Thunder Dragon, Fremantle Press, 2010 ( In 2012 they are co-leading another photographic tour of 12 people to Bhutan (24 September – 8 October), and Robert will co-lead a tour with renowned Australian photographer Peter Eastway (17–31 October). Details about these tours are available from

ML C Collegian

Beats a Global Path In the 1960s, young women were rarely encouraged to pursue degrees, let alone overseas travel or international careers. But thanks in part to pioneers like Susan Lenderking (Halbert ’63), the world is now a different place. “Although the women’s movement began in the US around 1960, Australia didn’t see real change until the seventies,” said Susan Lenderking. “Now it is fantastic to see how high school girls are being encouraged to think for themselves, to be creative and innovative – and to travel and study interstate or overseas.” Susan was in the same class as Heather Lamont, who was tragically killed in a farm accident. Her father established the Heather Lamont Festival at MLC in her honour – an annual arts event run by the students, and one of the most popular days on the MLC calendar. Susan regards this as a catalyst for change, just as the times were also changing. She recalls bucking against the restrictions of the Boarding House in the 1960s, where the accepted norm was to protect girls and groom them for a settled, domestic life and traditional ‘female’ jobs. “I was not a model student,” she said. “I used to sneak out of the dorm after bedtime to read by the lights of the corridor – I read the whole of Gone with the Wind that way!”

Susan was appointed Vice Captain of Sparta, enjoyed debating and hockey, and gained inspiration from some great teachers, especially Miss Stormon, from whom she caught a passion for history. Such inspiration, combined with a strong will, led her to pursue an arts degree, majoring in psychology, later to add a social work qualification from UWA. In 1967, Susan travelled to Japan as an exchange student, spending a month in Tokyo, where she turned 21, and then travelling back through Hong Kong, Cambodia, Indonesia and Singapore. The travel bug had bitten, and from then on, she looked for chances to return overseas. After exploring Europe, Susan won a position working in the Australian Pavilion at Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan. Instead of returning to Australia at the end of her year there, she spent a further six months travelling through Asia. In Osaka, she met her husband, a US diplomat from New York, whose career took them both further afield for several years – to Italy, Thailand, Peru and then Washington DC.

...fantastic to see how high school girls are being encouraged to think for themselves, to be creative and innovative...

Once settled in the US, Susan was able to continue her own career in a variety of positions. “One of the most exciting was a year in the public relations office at the White House,” she said. “It was fun being Australian in that environment – I remember telling President Reagan that I was the only Australian on his staff! In those days – 1988 – we were allowed to take visitors around the White House late in the evening or on Saturday mornings. I loved taking my Aussie visitors to see the Cabinet Room, the Oval Office, the Rose Garden and so on. Now security is much tighter.” During this time, Susan also worked for the American-Australian Bicentennial Foundation, which involved coordinating cultural events in both countries. One particularly memorable occasion was a dinner hosted by then Secretary of State George Schultz in honour of visiting Australian dignitaries. “My job was to organise the dinner, which included finding someone to make pavlova, and having passionfruit and banksias flown in from California,” said Susan. After six years in Washington, Susan’s husband was moved to Pakistan for three years – and she seized the opportunity to get her teeth into a challenging position as a Project Officer for the US Agency for International Development (USAID).



continued... “’s journey is all that the traveller can ask for. It is not the destination but what you learn along the way. In this role, she worked to support small Afghan NGOs assisting refugee women and children in border cities. This experience proved to be grounding for a career back in Washington with the Academy for Educational Development (recently acquired by Family Health International) which she has pursued for the past 18 years. “In my current role as Director of International Recruitment, I am sourcing people to work on public health, education and economic growth projects in developing countries,” explained Susan. Most projects are funded by large-scale donors, such as USAID, the World Bank and private foundations, and might be HIV/Aids prevention, anti-malaria programs, or improving girls’ access to education. “By capacity building in government ministries, providing technical assistance, teacher training and supporting micro-enterprise, we can help to achieve sustainable results over time.” Susan says she always wanted to work. “Even in our diplomatic postings I had full or part time positions. In Italy I worked for an American entertainment magazine and covered film festivals in Florence and Taomina, Sicily. In Thailand, I worked for a British public relations firm and then for an American refugee agency. In Peru, I had a classical music program on a local radio station.” “It isn’t always easy being an expatriate, even in America,” she added. “You have to forge connections that you take for granted at home – family, high school, and university – but I always enjoyed the diversity in our lives, which was not something I grew up with in the Australia of that time. I worked hard to learn about the history and cultures and languages of the countries I lived in, and made the most of all the opportunities for travelling.” Now a long way from the Boarding House corridor, Susan’s story of determination, adaptability and opportunities seized has its roots in that small rebellion. The path she and other women of her generation have forged allows today’s young women to travel even further. “I wasn’t a straight A student – this is not a pre-requisite for a successful life. But I was one of very few girls going to university,” she recalled. “We are now light years away in terms of the opportunities girls have, and the encouragement they receive.” Susan now mentors younger aspirants to international work: “I often ask them to read ‘Ithaka’, a poem by Constantin Cavafy, inspired by the travels of Odysseus. The poem says that life’s journey is all that the traveller can ask for. It is not the destination but what you learn along the way.”


When you set out on your journey to Ithaka, pray that the road is long, full of adventure, full of knowledge. The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops, the angry Poseidon – do not fear them: You will never find such as these on your path, if your thoughts remain lofty, if a fine emotion touches your spirit and your body. The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops, the fierce Poseidon you will never encounter, if you do not carry them within your soul, if your soul does not set them up before you. Pray that the road is long. That the summer mornings are many, when, with such pleasure, with such joy you will enter ports seen for the first time; stop at Phoenician markets, and purchase fine merchandise, mother-of-pearl and coral, amber, and ebony, and sensual perfumes of all kinds, as many sensual perfumes as you can; visit many Egyptian cities, to learn and learn from scholars. Always keep Ithaka on your mind. To arrive there is your ultimate goal. But do not hurry the voyage at all. It is better to let it last for many years; and to anchor at the island when you are old, rich with all you have gained on the way, not expecting that Ithaka will offer you riches. Ithaka has given you the beautiful voyage. Without her you would have never set out on the road. She has nothing more to give you. And if you find her poor, Ithaka has not deceived you. Wise as you have become, with so much experience, you must already have understood what these Ithakas mean. Pictured left: Susan (centre) about to begin working in the Australian Pavilion at Expo ’70 in Osaka, Japan. Canberra Times, 6 January 1970


An Entrepreneurial Spirit Adds

Beauty to the Lives of Others Jewellery designer Nicole Winkler (’91) loves to add pieces of beauty to the lives of others – including our own Prime Minister.

Above: Nicole Winkler

“Jewellery design suits me because I can create on my own terms,” said Nicole, who has fashioned individual pieces for public figures, most notably a pearl necklace and earrings for Prime Minister Julia Gillard. “I created the pieces and sent them to Julia Gillard before she became Prime Minister,” said Nicole. “I think it is great that we have a female Prime Minister now, and I have been delighted to see her wearing my jewellery on a number of occasions, including for her most recent official portrait.” Logie award winners and acclaimed Australian actors have also been snapped wearing Nicole’s striking pieces.


Describing her career as ‘chequered – in a good way’, Nicole’s creative drive was nurtured in ‘a wonderful haven’ – the MLC Art Room. As well as developing her artistic aptitude, Nicole also learned useful skills that she employs today, such as technical drawing. In Year 10, Nicole took up a work experience opportunity with a jewellery studio, was Arts Prefect in Year 12, and on leaving MLC pursued a Visual Arts degree at Curtin University. This was followed by the acting course at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA). “Acting and visual arts have always been my two passions – and still are,” said Nicole.

Before settling into her jewellery career, Nicole gave acting a chance. While she experienced great success in Australia and Asia – working with Bell Shakespeare, setting up independent theatre company Maelstrom, and landing guest roles in TV productions – she also worked in jewellery stores “to pay the bills”. After landing a job with the prestigious Sydney jewellers, Rox Gems and Jewellery, and tucking a diamond grading certificate under her belt, Nicole decided to set up her own jewellery designing business – an ambition that came to fruition in 2008 with Nicole Winkler Couture Jewellery.

My advice to students is to follow your dreams but think laterally.

Working from a home studio in inner west Sydney, Nicole collaborates with several gem merchants and master jewellers and setters in the Sydney area. She balances work with motherhood, designing while her baby sleeps and employing a nanny one day a week. Nicole only uses natural gems and pearls, set in sterling silver or gold, available from an online ready-to-wear range or as customized pieces. “I love the commissions, which are often for engagements, weddings and birthdays,” she said. “Custom design is about personal interaction and creating something unique for that individual.”

With interstate clients, she is able to liaise electronically, sending scale drawings and images. “For example, I recently created a black diamond ring for a client in Perth, communicating solely by phone and email,” she said. “They were very happy with the result.” Nicole travels to Perth and Melbourne once a year to organize jewellery parties, donating 10% of the proceeds to charity – usually either Oxfam or Médecins Sans Frontières. The next step is to expand and eventually open a store.

“Having worked as both an actor and an artist, I would advise students interested in acting to think carefully. I very much enjoyed it and found theatre particularly inspiring – but it is a hard career, challenging to the ego. Your creativity is out of your hands, placing you at the mercy of a director or casting agent. Having said that, any career in the arts is challenging.” “My advice to students is to follow your dreams but think laterally. Don’t go for the obvious choices, and don’t wait for work to come to you – make it happen. Working in the arts is hard work!” You can view and order from Nicole’s readyto-wear range at


Women in the Media Two key roles at Perth talkback radio station 6PR are owned by young MLC graduates Kate Cuthbert (’04) and Carley Sear (’06). A career in broadcasting often requires years of rural postings before moving into a high profile city-based job. Not so for two MLC graduates. Both Kate Cuthbert and Carley Sear went quickly from a postgraduate broadcasting course at WAAPA (WA Academy of Performing Arts) to executive positions at 6PR in East Perth. As Executive Producers of the Breakfast and Drive programs respectively, Carley and Kate cross paths briefly in the middle of each day. Kate’s role evolved from work experience at 6PR during her WAAPA course, followed by a stint as Assistant Producer on Drive. When the Executive Producer left less than six months later, Kate stepped into the role. Carley also used work experience as a stepping-stone into her position on the Breakfast show.

“When events like this happen, all your planning goes out of the window and you are 100% dedicated to finding people to talk to. You deploy all your skills to achieve a compelling interview. That’s why people listen, and these are the days I live for!”

For students considering a career in broadcasting Carley warns that they must be prepared to work unusual hours.

Immediately after the Japanese earthquake, Kate managed to find the phone number of a girl hiding under a desk on the 18th floor of a building in the thick of the disaster zone.

“I am always tired,” she said. “You have to be resilient and organized – being outspoken also helps!”

“You could feel her fear,” said Kate, “but she talked to us willingly and gave a vivid picture of the experience.” “We also talked to a farmer during the Margaret River bush fire – he was actually fighting the fire in a field and he answered his phone! The immediacy of this kind of radio is unbeatable.”

For both young women, it is the adrenalinpumping days they enjoy most.

Carley experiences a similar adrenalin rush from the immediacy of talkback radio.

“Stories we have covered include the Queensland floods, the New Zealand earthquake, the Japanese tsunami and the Margaret River bush fire,” said Kate.

“It’s exciting when things are happening now and there is great satisfaction in connecting with the community,” she said.

You deploy all your skills to achieve a compelling interview. That’s why people listen, and these are the days I live for!


“You can’t plan the day before because yesterday’s news is old,” she said. “You are planning on the run, and sometimes have no more than a few minutes to find an interview or information.” “When there was a potentially dangerous criminal on the loose in Perth, we had people calling in with sightings. We can also help to fix real problems – for example, a girl called in to say her cello had been stolen, and someone else called in to let her know it had been dumped outside their house!”

She gets up at 2.40am every weekday morning to be at her desk by 3.15am.

Carley says that MLC taught her to make the most of opportunities, and prepared her for the scholarship she won to study Journalism at Bond University in Queensland. The Vynka Hohnen Scholarship is awarded annually to a WA student. “Studying at Bond helped me to grow up fast, and to develop confidence and independence, which I believe enabled me to settle into a job quickly,” said Carley. “I am so grateful to MLC Careers Counsellor Sue Shaw for encouraging me to apply, as well as my tutor, Mandy Combes, who encouraged me to widen my horizons.” It was while at MLC that Carley discovered her interests in English, drama and politics – subjects that all contribute to her current role. “I have always been fascinated by the news, and now I have to be completely across it before the show goes to air each morning,” she said. “I read the papers and online news, follow news on Twitter and Facebook, and listen to interstate stations.” Kate’s advice to students taking a university path is to think outside the box.

Kate is pictured here with Mrs Lambert. Photo: Lisa Embleton

“You don’t have to know what you want to do – be confident about trial and error. And you don’t have to go to UWA to succeed in your career. I studied at UWA, then Curtin where I discovered a love for radio journalism. I finally found my feet at ECU, where I completed a double major in Broadcasting and Journalism.” “The ECU course was hands-on, and we had access to professional software and equipment. This prepared us well for work.” Kate describes the one-year postgraduate Broadcasting course at WAAPA as the best experience of her life. “We did nothing but radio every day for half the year, then TV for the second half. We got to do everything from reading the weather to presenting our own half hour news program. We learned how to use cameras, and all about sound and make-up.”

Kate and Carley advise students to keep an open mind when it comes to jobs in broadcasting, as the online world is continually opening up new opportunities and roles.

“It’s a fast-paced industry,” said Kate. “You have to keep up and you learn something new every day – I’m a really good person to have on your quiz night team!”

Thanks Mrs Lambert! Kate names Mrs Jodee Lambert, Head of Theatre Arts at MLC, as her inspiration. “Mrs Lambert took me under her wing and always encouraged me to do better,” said Kate. “I was lucky enough to land some great parts in the MLC musical productions, and I would say my current job is similar to being on stage – people are ‘watching’ me and I want to push myself harder in order to impress them.”

In Memoriam Dawn Blue

Enid White (’42)

Per Ardua Association Founder, Dawn Pax Frances Heathcote, passed away quietly in her sleep on Sunday 13 November 2011.

Enid White passed away after a short illness on 31 July 2011.

Dawn was born in Narrogin on 8 December 1918 – the dawn of peace – a month after Armistice Day. She was a fourth generation West Australian whose great-great-great grandparents on her mother’s side arrived on the Parmelia. Her working roles included accountant, secretary, real estate manager, boutique manager, London nanny, journalist for the Bunbury South West Times, and Avon lady, all the while being a mother and wife. Dawn met challenges with humour, and loss with grace. After Archie, her husband of 24 years, died in 1963, Dawn moved to Perth, determined that her children would benefit from a private school education. She gave a great deal of time to MLC in a voluntary capacity, initiating the Per Ardua Association to enable mums who were not Collegians to maintain a connection with the school after their daughters had left. Dawn’s daughter, Jo, and grand-daughter, Georgia, both attended MLC. Dawn touched the lives of many through her contribution to the community. She was the driving force behind country repertory clubs, ballet schools, Brownies and Guides in several towns – a much-loved Brown Owl and Guide leader. Dawn was awarded a golden ‘Oscar’ by The Aged Persons Support Service in Cottesloe for 25 years of dedication. She was a Foundation Member, Past President and Life Member of the Cottesloe Ladies PROBUS Club, and of the Westpac Retired Officers Association serving as secretary for 21 years. She was a regular model for the fashion parade at St Louis Estate where she resided for 17 years, ultimately organising a mobile shop for the Melvista Nursing Home – an energetic and tireless presence wherever she went. In her 70s, not content to remain at home, she and two friends strapped on backpacks and took off to see some more of the world. They saw a lot and had some riotous experiences. Dawn’s vivacity and energy, her ready laugh and ability to be a friend to all those she met will be missed throughout the community. She will be remembered with a smile.

Enid’s life had been one of service to others, starting in Pingelly where she assisted her father in his mechanical business, becoming an absolute whiz with spare parts. Later, after managing the business for some years, she moved to Albany where her parents had retired. Again charity work became a big part of her life, her favourite being her work with the Association for the Blind. Two senior staff from the Association flew to Albany for her funeral, and CEO Mrs Margaret Crowley apologised that a prior commitment prevented her from attending, but she sent a tribute to be read at the service – indications of Enid’s valued contribution. In all, 16 organisations benefited from her services, including 30 years as a friend of the Albany Regional Hospital, Silver Chain, the Flying Doctor Service and the Uniting Church, to name a few. Enid was made a citizen of the year for Albany and awarded a Commonwealth Medal.

Faye Adams (’47) Faye Adams was born on 12 February 1930, the eldest of four children. She spent her childhood in Shark Bay, where her father had a pearling business, which converted to commercial fishing during World War II. Faye had two sisters Georgette and Judith. All three girls attended MLC as boarders with Faye being at the College from 1941 to 1947. She was an accomplished poet and prose writer, and produced a book, In Pensive Mood. She was on the Magazine Committee, a member of the Basketball team, Secretary of the Gardening Club and Vice Captain of Sparta. Faye always loved books, and began to work in a library in 1954, remaining a librarian for most of her working career. In the 1960s she worked at the Postmaster General’s Department Research Laboratories Library (now Telstra), where her colleagues enjoyed her company and her dry sense of humour. Back in WA, Faye was appointed as the Librarian of the Main Roads Department in 1968, where she was well respected and gave excellent service until her retirement in 1988. Faye was a very generous, greatly supported both her sisters and was a warm and sincere friend. Faye passed away on 11 October after a short illness.


Alumni Reunions Hundreds of Collegians were able to reconnect with old friends at their Alumni reunions last year. The College offers tours of the MLC campus allowing Collegians to revisit their school and reminisce with their classmates. Some hadn’t been back to the College in 50 years.

Alumni Reunions are coordinated by Collegians and generally take place every ten years after graduation. Planning is already underway for this year’s reunions. The coordinators for 2012 are as follows:

Class of 2002 – 10 Year Reunion Suzanne Fisher – 0420 239 380, Fiona Hope – 0407874098,

Class of 1992 – 20 Year Reunion The Class of 1961 celebrated their 50 year reunion, starting with a campus tour on 16 October 2011

Natalie Barton Leeson – 0414 936 058,

Class of 1987 – 25 Year Reunion Kate Sugars – 0422 894 029,

Class of 1982 – 30 Year Reunion Elaine Ma – 0408 848 846,

Class of 1982 – 30 Year Boarders’ Reunion Sue Drayton – 0429 611 520, The Class of 1981 celebrated their 30 year reunion at the Wembley Golf Complex on 12 November 2011 (L to R): Jayne Rolinson, Peta Grant, Angela Witt, Louise Kendall, Kimberley Forster

Class of 1972 – 40 Year Reunion Terrie O’Shea – 0411 739 363, Sue Cameron – 0409 227 002, Chris Gardner – 0414 600 356,

Class of 1962 – 50 Year Reunion Barbara Engelbrecht – 9384 4452, Please tell us if your contact details change after leaving MLC, so that you don’t miss out on important reunion information. Either fill out and return the form on the back of the address sheet accompanying this magazine, or contact the College on (08) 9384 4000 or by emailing

The Class of 1991 celebrated their 20 year reunion at the Claremont Hotel after a College tour on 20 December 2011 (L to R): Cathy Newton-Smith, Nicola Sexton, Anneika Meade

Our website – – is continually refreshed with news and information on events, including an interactive online Community Calendar.


Per Ardua Ad Alta MLC Address: 356 Stirling Hwy Claremont, Western Australia 6010 Postal Address: PO Box 222 Claremont, Western Australia 6910 T: (08) 9384 4000 F: (08) 9385 1509 E: W: Cricos Registration Number: 00441G

Strive Issue 3  
Strive Issue 3  

A magazine for the Methodist Ladies' College (Perth) community.