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Mount Alexander College e m p o w e ri n g st u d en t s

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


PRINCIPAL’S REPORT None of us imagined a year like this one! While still mourning the loss of life and devastation of the January bushfires, we started the year with a great deal of excitement, welcoming another large cohort of Entry students, witnessing a fabulous Orientation Program led by the 2019 Gnurad Gundidj student leaders, a fun Entry Camp at the Summit, a wonderful swimming carnival and house competitions, a welcome BBQ for our Entry and new families and the MAC Open Day. In March life changed, in a way that none us could have ever imagined. In true MAC fashion we rose to the challenge of remote learning and triumphed, staff and students adapted quickly and efficiently, student attendance and engagement was high, the quality of the learning experiences were outstanding and, consequently, MAC was recognised by the Southwestern Region as an exemplar school. Outside of the classroom we ran virtual house and awards assemblies, course counselling interviews and parent information sessions, Q&A sessions for prospective students and parents and a virtual welcome night for our 2021 Entry families. Our students wowed us with their imagination and creativity hosting a range of virtual activities including Performing and Visual Arts competitions, fundraising activities, house Tik-Toks and virtual Clubs and Societies. I am In true MAC fashion we proud of our collective efforts and support of one another in getting through what will no doubt be one of the more challenging experiences rose to the challenge in our educational journey and lives in general. I would like to thank our of remote learning and parents who juggled their own work and home lives with children learning remotely. Thank you for your support and messages of gratitude which triumphed, staff and students helped lift the spirits of the staff. I would like to acknowledge our Graduates 2020 who have impressed us all in the way they adapted to the ever changing landscape and persisted despite not knowing with certainty how the year would progress. Our VCAL students have had to complete their VET studies online, which for the most part are practically based courses, as well as forgo their structured work placement. VCE students tackled trial exams remotely as well as SACs, and coped well with the challenges of failing tech at times. Despite these challenges all have successfully completed their VCE and VCAL certificates. I would like to congratulate students who have already been offered a place in tertiary studies and am confident that all students will excel in whatever pathway they embark on post-secondary school. We know that MAC will have prepared them well for whatever life throws at them.

adapted quickly and efficiently, student attendance and engagement was high, the quality of the learning experiences were outstanding and, consequently, MAC was recognised by the South-Western Region as an exemplar school.

In 2021 the school will yet again see growth in enrolments bringing the total school numbers to approximately 600 students. This is testament to the success of the school as an outstanding and innovative educational provider and a school that is catering for a diverse local community and range of students. MAC will receive two double story portables to meet the growth along with future growth in 2022. The Victorian Government will fund significant capital works for permanent accommodation and we look forward to creating new learning spaces that cater for the dynamic and evolving student led curriculum. I would like to thank the School Council for their support and in particular Richard Frazer, School President, for his outstanding leadership, commitment and service on council for many years. Thank you to the Parents and Friends Association for their fundraising efforts this year with the Bunnings BBQ. I look forward to working with and engaging with many more parents in 2021 and hope to welcome many more parents to our Parents and Friends Association.


Finally to the wonderful staff and students thank you for your unwavering persistence and enthusiasm. You are truly remarkable and I could not be prouder of your individual and collective efforts and, your incredible ‘can do’ attitudes. I am honoured and humbled to be part of such an incredible school community. I would like to wish you all a safe and happy holiday and I look forward to welcoming you all in 2021.

MS DANI ANGELICO, PRINCIPAL Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


Grads of 2020

26. Maths

38. Apollo House


Entry Level

27. Science

40. Artemis House

10. Student leaderhip

28. Sport

42. Athena House

14. Arts & Technology

30. Open Day

44. Poseidon House

18. English

32. Remote Learning Life

46. Words that shaped us

22. Humanities

36. International Students

47. Autographs

“The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there.” ― L.P. Hartley, The Go-Between

FLEMINGTON EDUCATION PLAN The Victorian Government launched an education plan for Flemington schools to deliver education excellence over the next decade. Minister for Education James Merlino and Member for Essendon Danny Pearson attended a virtual event to launch the Flemington Education Plan, which involves Ascot Vale Special School, Debney Meadows Primary School, Flemington Primary School and Mount Alexander College. The education plan includes $2.1 million in additional funding to speed up planning to deliver upgrade works at Ascot Vale Special School, Flemington Primary School and Mount Alexander College and sees the four schools come together to foster education excellence for students by promoting a safe and supportive environment for students, emphasising excellent teaching, quality facilities and student-focused learning through a collaborative approach. The funding is part of the Government’s ongoing response to support long-term economic recovery in Victoria. This plan will meet the needs of this growing and diverse community in Melbourne’s inner north-west, and will connect the knowledge, passion and expertise of local communities.

In addition to this, the announcement from the budget in November 2020 is a commitment of $24.773 million for capital upgrades and building works for the school. “This education plan ensures every student will have the opportunities and pathways they need to achieve educational excellence and thrive in a supportive community. We are investing in the Education State by building new schools, modernising classrooms and creating first class learning opportunities.” JAMES MERLINO, MINISTER FOR EDUCATION “Students, teachers and families around Flemington will be able to get the educational opportunities they deserve and their forward vision has been vital to the development of the Flemington Education Plan. This is about Flemington students having access to great local schools and a quality education.” DANNY PEARSON, MEMBER FOR ESSENDON M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


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This year, 2020, has been a year like no other, but it has been just so rewarding to see all our VCE and VCAL students be just so resilient and adaptable in the face of immense challenges. In late October, we had a bitter sweet farewell to our Graduates of 2020. While our celebrations looked a little different this year—live-streaming to the whole-school community—our students’ achievements were even more impressive. This year, 2020, was the culmination of 13 years of education, and for many of our Graduates, the end of a six-year association with the MAC community. Our Graduates of 2020 are a highly memorable cohort of students, and they will be sorely missed by all. We wish them all the best in their future endeavours, and can’t wait to find out what their journey has in store for them!



VCAL students this year undertook a wide range of VET courses, including Business, Allied Health, Building & Construction, Automotive, Beauty Services, Animal Studies, Electrotechnology, Screen & Media, Music Industry, Hospitality, Carpentry, Sports & Recreation and Visual Arts. VCAL students this year had to undertake a large part of their studies at TAFE remotely, along with their classes at MAC. This proved challenging at times given the practical components of their courses, but our students have worked diligently and flexibly in completing the requirements of their courses. Equally challenging was responding to changes in the workplace, with employers opening and closing through lockdown. Many of our VCAL students had to stop and start their Structured Work Placements repeatedly as the pandemic evolved. VCAL students also continued the strong tradition at MAC of integrated projects, shared amongst their STEM and Communications classes. It seems that not even a global pandemic can stop them! Although a small cohort of 22 VCE students, we are so proud of each and every one of them for their achievements this year. Our VCE Graduates faced challenges beyond face masks and remote learning. The General Achievement Test was postponed until Term 4 and the entire VCE examination period was pushed later to November. Study designs were heavily altered just for the Year 2020. This has meant that our scored VCE students will receive their results this year, and on 30 December, will have a better idea of how their future pathways will look like. We also had a number of students study languages

such as Vietnamese, Mandarin and Italian through the Victorian School of Languages and had a number of students undertaking subjects such as Media, Sociology, Health & Human Development and Specialist Maths through DECV before Remote Learning was even a thing! Through the Study Skills program, students took part in a number of virtual open days. Students explored the different pathways available to them through the VU guarantee program, The University of Melbourne Access Program and RMIT’s SNAP School program. We have a number of students who have already been guaranteed entry into a range of tertiary programs, and we are so proud that they are on track to achieve their dreams. We have set even higher expectations of all of our VCE students this year, and I am pleased to say that students have responded really well to the introduction of compulsory coursework requirements and the standard grade being raised to 50%. On top of this, students adapted well to SACs being run remotely, and were appreciative of the chance to get some timely feedback on their learning. We had a number of Above Entry 9 and AE10 students undertaking an accelerated VCE subject, including Studio Arts, Food Studies, Global Empires, Biology, Chemistry, General Maths and Maths Methods. These students have certainly been challenged, but will benefit from the experience over the coming years. Staff began the year with working with the Moonee Valley cluster of schools in establishing VCE Communities of Practice. Small groups of teachers of a certain study from a range of local public secondary schools all collaborated on topics such as moderation, assessment design, pedagogy and resourcing. Later in the year, Units 3&4 teachers undertook extensive data analysis as part of the Consideration of Educational Disadvantage process. This involved teachers—who know their students best—estimating how students would have performed on School-Assessed Coursework and Examinations if COVID and Victorian bushfires had not occurred. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all students, their families and staff for their continued support and collaboration over the year. I’m so proud of just how resilient our Senior Students are, and I speak for all staff when I say that we have learnt something from them this year. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!



Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook




We traveled so far and your friendship meant everything. It was very difficult, but there were moments of great beauty.

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M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


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GRADS OF 2020 Hi, my name is Yohannes Tilahun. I arrived in Australia in 2017 without speaking any English. In 2020, I am graduating from Mount Alexander College with my Senior VCAL Certificate.


In 2018, I started my college dream at Mount Alexander College. MAC is a multicultural school that has students of many different races, religions, languages, socioeconomic backgrounds, gender and family structures in one tree. The school is well equipped in terms of facilities as we have a gym, a library, a nice playground, our classes are modern and the labs are functional. MAC is my second home where I spend most of my time. Above all, it gives me a platform to do better in life and also builds my personality. The school is affordable and the education I have received is quality because I have developed in all aspects of life. Teachers come in all shades of character. There are those teachers who have a great love for the subject they teach and impart that love to us students too.


If someone asked me what I have learned from my school, I won’t be able to answer it in one sentence. The lessons are irreplaceable and I can never be thankful enough for them. I learned to share because of my school. The power of sharing and sympathy was taught to me by my school. I feel blessed to study in one of the most prestigious and esteemed schools. I started in Year 10. It was challenging at first but, when I started making good friends and developing my English and grammar skills, it got better and better, My other challenge was, of course, the studies themselves but I always fought hard to remain focused. I also sought support whenever I needed it and accessed all available services. I also remained connected with my community and appreciate the encouragement received from many. The teachers were also very supportive and encouraging for me and I am so grateful for their support. While I was doing Year 11 VCAL in 2019, I was one of the quick learning and hard-working students in my class. I was awarded Student of Term twice. This was for high achievement for a project that was given from the Leading Teacher-Student Engagement. I also took responsibility as a mentor helping other students with their work. 2020 is my final year of school. I thought 2020 would be fun and I was thinking about visiting Aircraft workshops and also getting


some experience, but “there is a bump in the road”. The COVID-19 pandemic has made 2020 tough but I always stay positive and thankful for being here (alive). For my well being, I found staying in touch with friends, teachers and family and trying to keep the conversation topics off the pandemic really helped me personally. I started learning how to cook. I had a few years where I didn’t know where I would be living, moving from one emergency accommodation to another, but this year I even moved into our community housing with my sister. I got one more award for the 2020 Semester 1 House awards for Integrity. This award was for my demonstrated commitment to Apollo House by upholding the College value of integrity through my actions and behaviour. My time at MAC has come to an end. I have completed my course work and school work now. I look forward to saying my final goodbye to the students and teachers who helped me be the person I am today. I am “finished but not done”. For 2021, I have applied for an Advanced Diploma in Engineering (Aeronautical) at RMIT and a Certificate IV in Tertiary Preparation as my second preference also at RMIT. It is the right choice for me as RMIT is a world leader in engineering which is what I am interested in. It is a multicultural university that has students from diverse backgrounds. I believe it offers good support to young people of refugee background. VCAL has provided me with the skills and knowledge to be interested in studying Aeronautical Engineering. I hope to be successful in this field because I am really passionate about becoming an aircraft engineer or to work in the aircraft industry. I have had a passion for aircraft since I was a young man in Ethiopia. I grew up fixing electronics and going to aircraft workshops with my dad who was an aircraft maintenance worker. He inspired me to be like him. It is the right choice for me as it is a world leader in engineering which is what I am interested in. It is a multicultural university that has students from diverse backgrounds. I believe it offers good support to young people of refugee background. Success is triumphing over hardships—willing yourself over anything and everything to achieve the best for yourself and your family. YOHANNES TILAHUN GRADUATE OF 2020

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

On Tuesday October 20 we joined the 2020 Grads in their farewell. As like everything this year, the assembly was very different to usual. Grads 2020 along with the student engagement team were in the Resource Centre, Entry and Grads 2021 in their SPD classrooms viewing on Zoom, Above-Entry 8-10 were viewing at home on Zoom and families were able to access the assembly through Facebook live. Junes, Houd and Harper, three of our Entry students officially opened the assembly. We then spent the period celebrating our most resilient Grads. College Captains Haniyah and Alex farewelled their peers and the Grads 2020 Masters of Ceremony, Ella, Kenneth



and David captured the essence of their experience here at MAC. Graduates received House awards for Academic Endeavour, Outstanding College Contribution and Outstanding Pathway Achievement. Congratulations to those students. MAC was also able to uphold our more than century old tradition of the Guard of Honour albeit virtually. We are so proud of our Grads 2020 who have demonstrated their grit, persistence and resilience in what was a challenging year for all.

Artemis House Awards

Athena House Awards

Poseidon House Awards






Apollo House Awards


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We’re finally here, near the finish line, where most of us doubted the possibility of today even occurring. We’ve all been saying to each other Imagine going through 13 years of school only to have the ‘best year of your life’ turn out like this. Yet despite all of this year’s craziness, we’re still here today, ready to begin closing this chapter of our lives and to begin opening the next. Even if this year was nothing like anything we could have ever expected, even if not everything went our way, getting through this year is a massive achievement in and of itself. As graduates of 2020 we can say we’ve been handed more than our fair share of difficulties, and that despite that, we didn’t let the uncertainty rob us of our opportunity to learn and prevail. I don’t know about you guys but I’ve had countless people telling me they feel sorry for us and that they couldn’t imagine how we felt. I’d answer with It’s life, since in the end it’s just the reality of the situation. We shouldn’t look at everything we’ve been through together as disadvantages, but instead challenges and opportunities, where we pushed ourselves to overcome adversity. We problem solved, mastered new ways of learning and grew our perseverance and resilience. And for that alone, we should be immensely proud.

In this new chapter of our lives, everything is going to be far from normal, as the future we foresaw at the beginning of the year isn’t the same as the one we’re looking at now. It may be hard to imagine how the future is going to look with uncertainty still lurking, but I want to remind everyone that anything and everything is possible with hard work, dedication and perseverance. So keep on striving to do your best whilst maintaining an optimistic attitude, as it will make an impact on where life leads you. HANIYAH ABDOU-SAID & ALEX LANGLEY COLLEGE CAPTAINS 2020

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


ENTRY LEVEL MS CLAIRE RUNCI, JUNIOR SCHOOL PROGRAMS AND TRANSITIONS COORDINATOR Three buses, thirteen and a half staff members and 116 very excited kids makes for a pretty great three days. From 26 to 28 February, Entry camp was held at The Summit Camp in Trafalgar. This year was held at the Summit camp in Trafalgar. School camp was a very enjoyable activity this year. School camp this year came just before Covid-19 hit Australia so that was lucky. School camp had so many fun activities such as the mud run and also the relay race and all the other activities were fun. Camp was also a good experience in making new friends. Camp was also a great experience to get to know your friends. I enjoyed camp because I faced my fear of the cave and did it even though I was nervous about it FLORA BREWER BLAKE



I enjoyed laser tag and putting the snake on my neck because I love snakes. I thought the muddy water challenge with the rope on top was challenging but I over came it. RUKIYE ISMILLI

C A M P T I M E I enjoyed the summit shoe game and jumping in the lake after the mud run because they were both fun. The mud run challenged me the most because it pushed my limits but I still did well and challenged myself. RUKIA ABDI

For me, Year 7 camp was very enjoyable to me. I got to create new connections with people and the activities were amazing. I found camp very positive and it was an excellent experience. At camp I really enjoyed the mud run the most. I enjoyed how challenging it was and the obstacles were new and blew my mind. The section I enjoyed the most was when we got to hop into the water and get across to the other side. This camp allowed me to know people a bit more and the teachers were very supportive. CHARLIE CASEY


I enjoyed the team-work part. I met new faces I’ve never seen at school. DEAKIN HELU

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

I thought the activities that we got to do was really cool and the competition that was woven through it was awesome and when you didn’t really want to keep going on an activity you could always think about let’s beat the other team! I think our group by the end of it had really good teamwork and we knew strengths and weakness and it was really nice cause now that I’m back at school I see them and I always have a happy memory connected with that person. BESS MARTIN

I actually quite enjoyed camp altogether. Most of the activities were fun… The mud run was pretty good because I was literally an army sergeant and gave lots of encouragement to get people to get a move on. JUNES VALACHOVIC

u r o n l l e a w fa o t

mi lie s


e m o lc



I really enjoyed the mud run because I had a LIT group. I found holding a snake challenging because I hate snakes and I overcame that by not being a chicken. ABDIRAHMAN ALI

On a balmy Tuesday evening, staff and students joined forces with the Parents and Friends Association to welcome all the new families to our school. Several Entry and Above Entry 8 students explained the curriculum program and some of our extra-curricular activities. Following this expert presentation, we were fortunate enough to have the PFA cook a delicious BBQ that our Entry families could share. A very big thank you to the staff, students and PFA involved in holding this event.

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook





It was supposed to be a new chance to improve and grow, receive opportunities, and make amazing memories, getting us excited for the new decade. Especially for the student leadership team; it was the first time MAC had a wide variety of leaders, all in charge of different areas such as performing arts, science, debating and others. At the beginning of the year, we were buzzing with excitement as we planned events to bring the school community together. We had planners laid out, dates marked on our calendars, and even drafted plans to propose to teachers. We all hoped that it would go according to plan if they approve- but little did we know that a global pandemic, COVID-19, would stop them. I’ll admit, I struggled to turn most of my ideas (as the Performing Arts Captain) into online events. There was lockdown, social distancing, and other restrictions to take


Overall, COVID-19 was a tough obstacle to overcome as a student leader. But at the same time, it gave me opportunities to reflect and test myself to see if I can adapt to this unpredictable situation. I hope many others saw this as well, and take time to recover from it. I look forward to what 2021 brings us! REA TINOY, PERFORMING ARTS CAPTAIN


A group of ten student leaders joined 218 other students from a wide range of schools across Victoria to participate in the Melbourne Youth Leadership Conference. Run by youth for youth, the Melbourne Youth Leadership Conference was designed to inspire, strengthen and empower our future leaders. This one-day event consisted of internationally recognised speakers and team activities, with a focus on four key outcomes the education system misses: Leadership, teamwork, communication, and entrepreneurship. Students participated in teamwork and communication challenges and got to meet some amazing and inspiring youth leaders. The first was Matt Runnalls a mental health advocate and CEO of mindfulaus. His message was to challenge what the meaning of leadership was. He was able to articulate this through his powerful and moving personal story which drove him to be driven by the


into consideration. I was also stuck coming up with ideas to engage students during remote learning. This all led to learning to cope with stress, and using my creativity to avoid boredom at home. But later on in the year, I got lucky when someone gave me a suggestion- which was a quarantine performance. I’m happy to say that I achieved this, even though it took all of Term 2 to organise, record and edit. Then in Term 3 it was showcased during assembly (at home).

mantra ‘If not me, then who; if not now, then when’. Then we met Wil Massara founder of Youth Leadership Academy Australia. What’s so awesome about this fact is that Wil is only 17. Wil shared his five lessons for youth advocacy and leadership: 1. Everyday we have a choice. 2. My differences are my greatest assets. 3. My age does not determine my ability to achieve extraordinary things. 4. The power of One is extremely underestimated. 5. United individuals create change.

youth worker and arts advocate for young people in similar situations to her. Lastly we met Will Connolly (better known as Egg Boy) who because an overnight celebrity for egging the Prime Minister. He spoke about how that action propelled him into a new vocation focussing on youth leadership, advocacy and as a public speaker. The students who attended came away with resources, notes and plenty of motivation to be change agents here at MAC and in their own lives.

Other inspiring guest speakers included Lachie Delchau-Jones who started his own businesses from the age of 14, now as an 18 year old he travels the world to work and as a guest speaker. Siobhan Kellaghan-Tasker who as a teenager experienced a life changing medical condition which shaped her future and inspired her to work as a


The 2020 student leadership team held their annual Student Leadership Retreat on Friday 13 March. The team stayed here at MAC for the night. It was an opportunity for the team to report on conferences they’d attended as leaders and progress on projects they had planned for term 1 and the rest of the year. The team were then given time to work in smaller teams to plan out further programs. After a lot of work we had a dinner break then finished the formal part of the night with team building and leadership development activities. It was yet again a great night for the student leaders to get together and have time to collaborate on projects aimed at improving student participation and engagement.

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

Alex Langley was nominated the University of Melbourne Principals Scholarship 2021 for his academic achievements and contribution to MAC and the wider community. For students to be able to meet the criteria to be nominated for this prestigious award they have to demonstrate outstanding high level academic achievement throughout their VCE studies and demonstrate their involvement and contribution to their school community through student leadership and leadership in the wider community, fund raising, school performances and volunteering. This is a great achievement and we are all very proud of you Alex.


Our team’s response was to create an interactive website and social media campaign for their business Express UR Stress: mental health support for teens. Throughout the week students were mentored by industry professionals in their ideation stage through to their marketing strategy and financial planning. Team 15 worked amazingly on the shared site to communicate, delegate and organise Zoom meetings to discuss next steps. Kate Stevanovic as well as Alison Lovett, Claire Runci and Clark Mitchell checked in on Team 15 across the week and were amazed with the level of commitment and resilience the team demonstrated.

Team 15 came away with the Best Pressure Cooker Submission Award. Congratulations to all the illuminate:nextgen team.

The illuminate:nextgen challenge was hard and stressful at times. It was challenging to be working from home and trying to work with a group. There were times during the week when things got tough and I’d just wanted to stop and give up. The challenge taught me to manage my time better, always try my best and to not give up when things get challenging. – JAIMIE O’CONNOR The illuminate: nextgen Challenge is a great program to be a part of it teaches you about business and how to create one it also helps you with your teamwork abilities. This program was a wonderful thing to take part in it was fun, since you are also competing against other schools it is more fun knowing that you are competing and gives you a little anxious feeling. It was also more fun because you are in groups with students from your school every day of the program was wonderful. I would recommend taking part in this program if you can it is a great opportunity to learn new skills that can be helpful in life. – NAND PATEL



From 3 August to 7 August, MAC participated in the illuminate:nextgen challenge. Known as ‘Team 15’ this team included Jaimie, Will, Ruben, Kitty Rose, Nand and Jayrell. The challenge is an entrepreneurial program which included teams across Victoria and Tasmania to come up with a solution to the challenge. The challenge was to look at a new opportunity for technology to be implemented in their community. The response could be something that helps out the community, something businesses could use or something that helps residents engage in technology. The team had to strategise ways to make money from the idea to make their business sustainable and able to be replicated in other communities into the future.



During remote learning the Student Leadership Team had a Spoon Pass Challenge. Poseidon students (Brendon Henry, Lotte Van Hulsan, Bethany Tang, Inas Adil Ahmen, Violet Wong, Bilhah Ryan, Liam Pham, Faith Quah, Lachlan Janetski and Jerry Ng), Head of House (Sophie Dalabiras) and Mentor teacher (Kate Stevanovic) gave up their lunch break to work together to create the Spoon Pass short video.


A select group of students (Inas Adil Ahmed, Kowsar Salaat, Muna Osman, Mahdi Hassan, Khalid Abdi-Aziz, Fatuma Mohamed and Sundus Mohammed) successfully secured a Student Leadership Scholarship through VICSEG New Futures. VICSEG New Futures is a not for profit, community organisation providing “Opportunities for Diverse Communities” through innovative and culturally responsive programs to address the migrant settlement needs of young people and their families. The scholarship involved weekly workshops delivered by a VICSEG mentor and aims to develop personal leadership, organisational and communication skills, school performance including good study habits and social inclusion and social awareness.


The North Melbourne Football Club team members from The Huddle, Steph and Kate delivered a virtual girls group workout each Friday during remote learning. There was cardio, body weight exercises, strength building exercises and a lot of fun and smiles.

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook





This year, I completed a 10-week youth leadership project with the Western Bulldogs Football Club aimed at 14-16 year olds. Throughout the 10 weeks I learnt so much about leadership, career paths, how to manage mental health and many cool things. I met so many new friends and we also played some very fun ice breaker games, Kahoots you name it. The aim of the project is to create a social impact project. Mine was alongside two wonderful people aimed at targeting men’s mental health especially in youth. We created an Instagram page called “MENtalking” which I’m sure you’ve heard of already. We decided to run for the herd and raise money for a youth mental health organisation batyr. Together we amassed 20km thanks to the help of the lovely MAC teachers and raised $1019 in two weeks! In future we plan to continue running for the herd and selling badges. I’d like to thank Kate for advertising this to me, all the Western Bulldogs staff and volunteers. I definitely recommend it to anyone because it’s not just about leadership it’s about your future and how to improve yourself. Next year’s program I assume will be face-to-face which means there will be a camp! You also get your own personalised Bulldogs leadership hoodie which is pretty cool. I’ll definitely apply for the program next year either as a returning participant or a volunteer. Take the chance to apply next year and it will take you places like it did for me. Remember, push yourself because no one else is going to do it for you! JERRY NG

GETTING ACTIVE WITH MELBOURNE CITY FOOTBALL CLUB & NORTH MELBOURNE FOOTBALL CLUB Students participated in two programs. One led by Melbourne City Football Club (MCFC) as part of their ISpeak program and one led by members of The Huddle through North Melbourne Football club (NMFC). We have been involved in the 4 week online program run by the Melbourne City Football Club. Along the way we have learnt more about the warm up, conditioning and cool down phases of

soccer training, how to cook certain foods and useful advice from guest speakers. We want to thank Abraham from Melbourne City and all the other volunteers and guest speakers for taking the time to run a fun and inclusive program for all of us who love soccer! We have learnt so much and will apply what we have learnt to our daily lives. JERRY NG, KHANG PHAM, ISSAN ALI, JACK SHEARS AND LEO CROWLEY


Last year a team of seven students, Aymane, Miranda, Thomas, Jerry, Marcella, Jacinta and Ruby attended Gnurad Gundidj School for Student Leadership for 8 weeks of Term 4. During their stay they worked on a Community Learning Project they would enact back at MAC. Their proposal had a focus on the transition into high school from primary school and supporting positive mental health and physical activity. The seven students designed four distinct activities and ran the whole day with the whole of the Entry cohort. Entry students participated in team building, a mural, team sports and a classroom information session in building positive mental health.


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

I remember being confronted by police notifying me about the lockdown and they looked at me like I was a criminal. A fews days later I switched on the TV and saw Pauline Hanson (One Nation Leader) calling us living in the flats, “Drug addicts who cannot speak English.” That outraged me and I want to tell people like Pauline that is simply not the case. Anyone who has a roof under their head shouldn’t be discriminated against. The media has also been good, also highlighting volunteers’ efforts in providing food for us. Along the lockdown I had more time to finish my VCE PE and Maths homework and also learn a few chords on the ukulele. I’ve also had the luxury of chatting to my friends online and learning about their experiences and playing on the Playstation. The moment my family and I had been waiting for, the COVID test... On the evening of July 7 at 8pm, there was a loud knock on my door, I thought it was more food supplies but that wasn’t the case. I opened the door and saw two people heavily suited with protective equipment and knew we were going to be tested. So I called my parents and they both got tested first, then it was my turn. They asked

me to fill in my details and asked for a swab of my tongue, then came the dreaded bit. The part where they swabbed my nose. I tilted my head up slightly too high and instantly felt excruciating pain in my nostrils. I was frozen for about 5 seconds, then came the relief the test was over! Getting tested for COVID was dreadful, the straw like object being stuck up my nose caused tears to form in my eyes because of the pain of the test. Long last, The Premier has announced Stage 3 restrictions for all the towers in Flemington which is where I live in. On 9 July in the afternoon. The Premier Daniel Andrews announced that all the towers in Flemington would be back to stage 3 restrictions from 12am, meaning we could finally taste the fresh air. I am happy that everyone in most of the towers are able to go outside but also feel the sense of the unknown from negative media, restrictions and my test results failing to arrive after 4 days. The moral of this lockdown is, “We are not the same, but we are equal.” Thanks to all the kind volunteers who’ve helped us! Now I can finally feel the sensation of fresh air when I’m outside. JERRY NG


The Young Leaders in Sport Conference at Victoria University was an awesome experience. The day began by taking 45 minutes trying to find the entrance! We then heard an inspiring speech from a former soccer player, talking about leadership and how to overcome your own battles. After that, we discovered how everyone is different and we bring different perspectives to the table which is influenced



Early in 2020, a group of sixteen student leaders attended a sport leadership day at Victoria University to challenge themselves and develop leadership qualities with peers their age from other schools. Here’s what happened on the day from the perspective of the students who attended.



by our personality traits. We took a short quiz to discover what kind of bird we were. An owl, dove, peacock or eagle, each represented a personality type like introverted or extraverted. But the best was saved for last, we were split up into groups and given a sporting organisation to represent. We were then put into a hypothetical press conference and had to answer questions which covered topics such as sexual assault, wrongdoing from the media and discrimination towards the LGBTQI+ community to name a few. The day was so enjoyable and I personally took a lot away from it. LUKE VELLA, STUDENT LEADER

RUBBISH ART Thinking about what I could do in my role as Environment Leader I came up with the idea of the Rubbish Art competition. Its aim is to create awareness about rubbish in the environment while providing a fun activity to do in lockdown. Students were to use rubbish in an artwork of some kind. Having come up with this idea I got in touch with the Arts Leader, Maya, and we fine-tuned it. The submissions that we have got so far have been really interesting and creative. SOL FAULKNOR, ENVIRONMENTAL CAPTAIN

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook





TOBY LUKIN’S SPICY LAMB CHICKPEA AND LENTIL SOUP Ingredients 1 Tbsp olive oil ½ brown onion, finely diced ½ carrot, peeled, paysanne 300g lamb, diced 1 garlic clove 1 tsp grated ginger 1 tsp cumin ½ tsp turmeric 200g diced tomatoes 300ml chicken stock 300ml water ¼ cup red lentils 200g canned chickpeas 1 Tbsp plain flour 1/3 cup coriander, chiffonade ¼ cup Greek yoghurt Crusty bread, to serve

Method 1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. 2. Add onion and carrot, and cook, stirring, for 5 mins or until softened. 3. Add the lamb and cook, stirring, for 5 mins or until the lamb is browned. 4. Add the garlic, ginger, cumin and turmeric. Cook, stirring, for 1 min or until fragrant. 5. Add the tomato, stock and water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 20 mins. Add the lentils and chickpeas and simmer, covered, for 45 mins or until lamb is tender. 6. Stir the flour with 40ml water in a small bowl until smooth. 7. Add the flour mixture to the soup and stir to combine. Increase heat and cook, stirring, for 5 mins or until soup boils and thickens slightly. 8. Remove from heat and stir in the chopped coriander. 9. Season with salt and pepper. 10. Divide among serving bowls and top with a dollop of yoghurt. 11. Sprinkle with coriander sprigs and serve with crusty bread. Personal Review: Preparation: It was surprisingly easy, I cut the carrots in half because I thought a thin round carrot would be a bit big for a soup. The onion and garlic were average things you cook for dinner so I already knew how to do them so that was also easy. I didn't have fresh ginger, instead I minced ginger in a tube which still worked fine. I didn't know what lamb to use so I used fillets and diced them. Cooking: The cooking was pretty fun and easy. My favourite part was frying off the onion, carrot and lamb. The cumin gave the soup a nice smell and the turmeric gave it a nice look. I was surprised about how much liquid was going into the soup, but then I saw the flour and also remembered it was a soup. I tasted the broth and it tasted like nothing really, not even water, so I added some tomato paste and chilli flakes which helped the flavour a lot. I noticed the lamb was too tough because I used super lean lamb, so I let it simmer for 3-4 hours. Tasting: I wasn't a big fan of the soup, it was still kind of tasteless to me but it had some more flavour than originally because I added extra flavours that I thought would work. The only time it really tasted really good was when it had the meat and vegetables on the same spoon. I personally think it needs a little bit of body to it, maybe add some baby spinach at the end.


Sensory Evaluation: this risotto tastes creamy and the rice is al dente so it is holding it’s form quite nicely, to modify this recipe you could make it without peas (like I did) and instead you could leave it just as bacon or you could add mushrooms. I personally would add the mushrooms in with the onion, bacon and garlic so that you pack your risotto with flavour. For a vegetarian option you could use vegetable stock and add peas and mushrooms. Self reflection: I’m actually really proud of myself with this risotto as when I was younger my mum was never happy with how her risotto came out so I assumed it was really hard to make but today I proved myself wrong. Dad rates the risotto a 10/10 :)


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook



Food Science is an outstanding class that explores the chemistry and biology of food and its processes. It includes two theory lessons and one practical, but during this lockdown period teachers and students have had to improvise on our learning facilities. We have recently been performing virtual experiments for some of our theory lessons to assure the safety and accessibility of learning from home. As well as throughout practical sessions where we should be cooking, the teacher provides simple convenient recipes and includes a video of herself for anyone to use in the state of any issues. Teachers also provide extensions for students looking for challenges and or to exceed. In addition, our In2Science Mentor Anne has been keeping up with our classes via Zoom from Singapore. She engages in the lesson by talking about the Science behind some foods from where she is, according to the topic. Anne clearly does show her level of commitment and love for this subject and loves cooperating with us, students. Lastly, I would like to express my profound interest in this subject continues to grow and flourish mainly rewarding to the wonderful teachers who always assist and recommend ways of improvements when in need. BILHAH RYAN


Students have been learning about Ephemeral Art and have been encouraged to consider aspects of time and transience when imagining and creating artworks. Focus has been on exploring materials in their homes and immediate environment and developing the ability to express their ideas and chronicle process and experiences.

I wanted to create something playful and using resources that are easy to access. Playing cards are a household staple, I chose to create a card tower. I just started stacking the cards to see where it took me. The cards are very versatile and you can easily make small structural adaptations to facilitate the building process. As simple as it seems it actually takes a lot of concentration and fine motor skills, it took me about 25 minutes to complete the entire thing after a few failed attempts. I hope viewers would share the playful, homely and familiar feel of this art. ELEANOR MCRAE I made this by tracing the outline of my chicken ‘Marie Antoinette’ with chalk and drawing random patterns on the outside. I made this so I could incorporate Marie into my artwork. It’s not really symbolic of anything, but in a way it represents how I see my chickens and how pretty they are on the inside and outside. ISABELLA MESITI In this piece I used buckets to make the circle outline. Rocks were used as we had had some out the back. I like the circles as they are simple and they remind me of motion- like a skateboard wheel or the motion of the planets as they rotate around the sun. It was a fun piece to make. I am not sure how people would respond to the work but if I saw it on a walk I would think it was pretty cool. It would make me curious. ZIGGY VAN HULSEN In my artwork I’ve strived to reflect beauty, nature, imperfections and elegance. Beauty and elegance are displayed in the women’s dress as it appears to be flowing to one side. The flowers’ soft, simple colours and the women’s expression both contribute to these elements of the artwork. Imperfection is resembled within the dress, as each flower is a little flawed and different from another flower. However, the beauty of one flower doesn’t make another less beautiful. Nothing in my artwork is perfect, but that’s also what makes it intriguing and unique. The flowers I used added dimension, depth and shadow to the dress. I wanted the face to maintain minimalism and simplicity, so it didn’t overpower the dress. The dress and face complement each other and help form the result of the style/look I was seeking for. I hand drew the calm face, and upper body then picked multiple elegant flowers. Then simply arranged them in a particular way even facing some upside down to create an impact in the dress. How I organised them also allows the dress to appear and contain a flowing motion. ELLA ANDERSON-FITT To get the effects shown in the picture, I turned the lights off so I could get a good picture of the bubbles. I then proceeded to get a mirror so the bubble would reflect off the mirror. To get the right angle and effect that I intended, I took a picture of the bubbles whilst I was still blowing them. Once I took the picture I blurred out the background so the main focus would be on the bubbles. I believe the response to someone seeing this work would have them in awe due to the colours of the bubbles, this is because most people don’t see the natural colours of the bubble due to the bright lights around them. SALWA ABDO

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook




The school was successful in a technology grant application at the end of last year. The funds were used to purchase computers and 3D printers to further support the Robotics program, Make-it-Mark-et and Shark Tank as well as the introduction of a new elective for 2021 called Tinker Technology. This subject comes about thanks to the enthusiasm of our technology staff Katharine Gu and Thomas Grocott and their passion for the subject and Travis Burroughs Leading Teacher from Templestowe . In this subject students push the limits of “what is” and stretch their imagination to rethink and remake the products around them. They work with a large variety of technologies to make their ideas reality. Students will work on several projects using plastics, electronics and recycled materials for personal and community needs.


These projects teach designing, manufacturing and sustainability skills. In this subject students investigate processes such as: • Parametric modeling • 3D printing • Laser cutting/printing • Vinyl cutting and pressing • Coding • Circuit production • Prototyping Students will work through a design process to create an individual portfolio including everything from early research to marketing a finished product.


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook





Meir by Eve Lomasney

Winner of the 2020 MAC Writing Competition

Thinking about my death, which is soon to come, makes me realise that once Meir and I die, our family will be gone. With no one left, our family will cease to exist. I remember the day I lost my wife. It was 17th of August, 1942. It was a hot day of 70 degrees fahrenheit. We had just been let off the train at a stop called ‘Auschwitz’. We were being herded towards a pair of big wrought iron gates. Everyone was shoved through them, so escaping was not even an option; we were packed together like sardines. As we emerged from the gates, there was a clear divide through the crowd. All women and girls were to the left, and all boys and men to the right. There was no information on where both groups went after the split, but we all went along with it because there was no other option. As I watched my beautiful wife walk away to the left, I had no idea that that would be the last I ever saw of her. For weeks I waited. For months I was in a constant gloom; it was like someone had laid a thick blanket over all the light and joy in my life. All I had was darkness and weltschmerz, as the Germans called it. Now, a whole year later, I have not forgotten her. I do not think I will ever see Zuzanna again, but I refuse to believe that she is dead.







Immediately I think of a happy memory, when we were all together as a family, living in Poland. It was Hannakah, so my wife had prepared a wonderful feast for us all to celebrate the Festival of Lights. Meir was a naturally small boy. He just looked out for himself, and didn’t care for friendships. At home, his main concern was food. He would even fight his brothers as he clambered for food. This trait was useful during the holocaust, as there was always a shortage of food, so fighting for it was routine for him. Even back on the train, Meir was willing to fight me, his father. He probably didn’t notice who he was killing.


I am not angry or disappointed towards my son. I am all of those things at myself, but merely sad for my little Meir. He fought me, his own father, for food, but did not even get to eat it. I am angry and disappointed, but only at myself. My one life goal was to protect and support Meir. My last child is as good as dead and there is nothing I can do to help, because so am I!

The reason I have been left with just one child can be traced back to one day, one devastating, traumatic day. My whole family was starved, like all the rest, and it was a selection day. Selections were random and cruel. You walked past the judges and they decided whether you were healthy enough to live. If you were not, it was a single track road to the crematoriums. I had given my age as much younger, and pretended that my unusually large size was all muscle. At every selection day, I would run past the judges, using a whole week’s worth of energy. That way, they could not see my wrinkles and would simply presume that I was very strong. I tried to convince my children to do the same, and run past the judges so that they would look strong too. This was such a struggle for them all, that many of them refused, and said that it was all they could manage just to walk. All of my boys, but one, walked past the judges, so that every imperfection, every skinny limb, every dark circle under their eye was picked up by the judges. Meir, my last son, who is dying next to me right now, was the only of my children to run past the judges. He was not being loyal to me, but simply to himself; he only cared about survival. Meir could not work for the next week, and spent several nights in hospital from lack of energy, because of the running. Eventually he recovered, and returned to his bed, to learn that all of his brothers had been sent to the crematorium. This news drained both him and myself of all willpower and hope. From then on, I made my one life goal to be to protect Meir at all costs. I couldn’t bear to lose one more person, and be the only one left in the family. Now, I think that being the only one left in the family is not something I have to worry about. I am just as dead as Meir, so soon our family will be no more. I can feel my body giving up, slowly dying, limb by limb. As I drift off into an everlasting slumber, I am neutral. I have no unfinished business. I know that there is nothing more that I can do while I am alive. I may be disappointed in myself for letting such tragedies occur, but in each of the deciding moments, I knew no better than what I was choosing to do.


My son walks away, I watch as he is attacked by another group of starved men. As I close my eyes, dead with hunger and injury, I see my son collapse, stripped of the bread I fought for, and like me, left for dead.




My whole life I have been a faithful man, who never questioned God’s choices. I was brought up religious, and I remain to be, to this day. Even though I have no explanation for God’s recent actions, I know that once I pass away, everything will work out. Perhaps all of this is to teach Earth’s inhabitants to be kind to one another, and to never let such a tragedy occur ever again.

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook









Highly Commended entry from the 2020 MAC Writing Competition

Hard Work By Rea Tinoy Open Mic

Madd Hatters By Bay Lana Dailey Standing on a checkered blanket, The blue roses and pink daisies, Swaying. My legs go numb- My vision straying. Feeling the fall, the grass. Too hard To interpret.

Hard work is mama’s second nature. Using up time and effort for her is no different. No matter how hard or easy the task may be, She always ensures she does it to the best of her abilities.

I awake, sitting at a table. Teacup in hand, sweets all aroundConfusion rises, my words drown. Why... aren't I able?

Fast forward, as a caregiver for two decades. Saving lives need experts- no masquerades. So her brain’s constantly working; Like water filling up a cup, until it’s overflowing.

What has happened? Worry starts to bubble, The mind starts to race- This could be trouble. I laugh, As if maddened. There’s a shatterCeramic piercing my skin An all to sudden surge of anger, Thanks to the sense of dangerMy patience wearing thin. The silence- Violently loud Skin pinched as the blood drops Mind is going into overdriveThe shaking never stops. Until I notice someone bowed

The third child among seven children. At a young age, responsibilities were given. She cooked, cleaned, washed laundry until her fingers bled, Her eyes glistened, wondering when she’ll ever get to dream.

Being at home is like baking a cake. Her crankiness is the base. My annoying joke becomes the glaze, My brother’s loudness is the filling, but it doesn’t stopHer tiredness is the cherry on top. Despite chaos, there’s one thing she looks towardsRest. Because that’s her reward. Nothing’s better than dozing off on the sofa, Holding a cup of hot mocha, while the tv’s playing a kdrama. So among all this, I want her to know that I’m forever grateful. I want to do the same, strive hard to be successful. Hard work might be her second nature, But it will also be mine in the near future.

The world seems to slow, When he smiles, It reaches his ears. Though unnervingIt eases my fears. At this he appears to glow. It feels as though he’s been projected. But you couldn’t tell by eye. I chance it and ask, “What am I?” He gives me an answer, But not the one I expected. “You? A Mad Hatter, taking a sipQuicksilver, straight from a tulip. The insanity- a lovely view”

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


Madd Hatters by Bay Lana Dailey




I thought I’d share the books which have shaped my life in one way or another. It wouldn’t be too much of a surprise that I enjoy to read sporting autobiographies. Any sports lovers would know that the elite athletes before us weren’t handed the gift to reach the highest level with a click of the finger. When reading autobiographies you find out the hard-work, discipline and commitment required to achieve greatness. You don’t just read the success achieved over their careers, but also find out about their upbringing, lifestyle, mistakes made and the challenges which all play a part in what shapes them as a person. A personal favourite of mine was the autobiography by Brent Harvey. If you would like to find out more information about sporting autobiographies, please speak to one of the HPE or English staff members. Happy reading!


Australia was a very different place in 1995. I was 17, had moved away from home to attend Monash University and live on campus. To my immigrant parents’ horror, I had chosen to do a Bachelor of Arts degree. I stood out in my lectures because I was the only Woman of Colour. This is the year in which I first read ‘Beloved’ by Toni Morrison. Rather than summarise the story, I thought I would tell you what lessons I still carry with me from ‘Beloved’, which is about the enduring legacy of slavery across generations in the United States. History is not the past, we always carry it with us, in our epigenetics, in our collective trauma, dehumanisation leaves generational imprints on the oppressors and strips away their humanity. None of us are free, until all of us are free. “Definitions belong to the definers, not the defined.” ... There is a herstory that exists beyond the history that we are taught. We need to listen to the gaps, the silences and seek out the answers, so that everyone’s stories are known because these silences harm us all. For 17 year old me, my entire undergraduate degree was the start of trying to understand how I, the great granddaughter of indentured labourers from India had ended up in Fiji and how two military coups in these tiny Pacific islands of my birth had led me to the settler state of Australia, which is based on the genocide of its First Nations people.


To read ‘Beloved’ is to read a part of the trauma of those who have been oppressed, enslaved and colonised. It is important to bear witness to these stories rather

than pretend they did not happen and do not continue to shape our world. My Bachelor of Arts degree is the best investment I have ever made in myself. I have used what I learnt every single day of my life since. It has shaped the teacher and human I am today. Toni Morrison’s ‘Beloved’ is an instrumental part of that learning. I hope that you too, find a book that has such an enduring impact. My copy from 1995 is in this photo. The earrings are from Haus of Dizzy a Blak owned business. In recognition of NAIDOC week. Always Was. Always Will Be.


I love reading to the point that I can remember myself as a child admiring the books on the bookshelf of my room before I could read them. However, this changed during my last three years of secondary school when I learnt to hate reading. As a consequence I started seeing myself as a dumb person because I loathed the books that I had to read and scrutinise in my Literature lessons. After the Brazilian tests equivalent to VCE SACs, it took me one year to re-start reading for pleasure (but I don’t read Brazilian or Portuguese classic literature anymore). However, considering the insidious consequences of ubiquitous media currently intensified by the Internet and social media, I’d say “Trust me, I’m lying” is a book that changed my life by exposing how the media distorts reality and steals my time for someone else’s profit.


Straight up don’t like it, or enjoy it.

However as I have gotten older, I have started to get a taste for it. With life and our personalities it all changes and develops as we get older. It took me a long time to be comfortable with me and who I am which influences what I want to read. So it wasn’t until I was in my late twenties when I started. It was 1 book though that really pushed me into reading more, making me spend days absorbed into books that any other. It was Andrzej Sapkowski ‘The Last Wish’ the first book in the The Witcher series. A lot of you will recognise this from the successful video game franchise of the same name is mostly based on the books. But to really get an understanding of Geralt and the world of the Witchers you really need to read the books. It has got me to a point that I spend a recent holiday to Argentina spending days and days sitting on a roof top in Buenos Aires just reading. It took me go on adventures in strange cities looking for English language sections of bookstores to try and get the next book in the series as I finished the holiday novel in 3 days. You could say this book changed my life.

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook



As a young adolescent, I remember reading a book named “I will overcome (Ani Etgaber)”, written by the Israeli author Devorah Omer. The book’s plot-line follows the path of a young girl named Gila, who was born with cerebral palsy. It’s worth mentioning that this book was written in the 70s, and at the time, was the first time a person with a disability was the main character of an Israeli children’s book. The book follows Gila and her family as she grows up and shows her struggles through childhood and adolescence. As she is only diagnosed with physical impairment and not cognitive, her mother decides to send her to a regular education system, where she encounters various difficulties. She deals with rejection not only from her peers but also from the adults surrounding her. For me, this book was the first encounter with the world of disabilities, which promoted me to sympathise with the heroine. It helped me to grow my appreciation for what I have, learn from the heroine’s perseverance and resilience, and inspired me to overcome my own struggles as a young girl. At the end of the book, the girl manages to overcome the obstacles she is faced with and follows her passion to become a teacher. If my memory is not playing tricks on me, I believe this book had at least a partial impact on my desire to become an educator. I also believe that this book allowed me to view the world of disabilities authentically and probably led me, in some unconscious ways, to the wheelchair dancing group I volunteered in during my Uni studies. I hope you can also find a book that helps you see how you can overcome any obstacle and maybe inspire you to try new things.


This year, we had a whopping four teams competing in interschool debating. Our veterans, Marcella and Jacinta join four new C-Grade debaters, Isaac, Isabella, Tahlia and Leo. Their first round was on Monday night, arguing that ‘That children should be legally required to take care of their parents rather than placing them in aged care.’ They managed a one point win. In addition to our champion seniors, we had three D-Grade teams comprised of Year 7-9 students. Our veterans, Sol, Molly, Maja and Brynn were joined by several new-comers: Rea, Evan, Reeds, Violet, Hannah, Max, Asher, Amra and Alex. These teams tackled the very tricky topic that That we should limit the number of cars that each household can own. While none of the teams won at this level, everyone learnt something from their experience, such as ‘maybe I should have prepared more…” (Reeds) and “You can’t call the opposition You” Hannah.

The debating team, along with everyone else in Melbourne, pivoted to accommodate the new social distancing requirements. Our interschool competition moved to an online setting with Rounds 2, 3 and 4 conducted via Zoom.

Our C-Grade team worked together to overcome the challenge of secret topics, where the topic of the debate is revealed an hour before they have to debate it. There were some fairly adrenaline-filled research and speech writing sessions that proved to be quite the cerebral challenge. In round 4, C-Grade even managed to win the secret topic debate by challenging the notion that ‘video games have a positive impact on society.’

D-Grade met regularly to discuss their three topics and developed quite the knack for research and speech writing using persuasive devices. They also managed a win and Molly Badenoch won the best speaker. It has been so lovely seeing the debaters rise to yet another challenging aspect of 2020 and really hone their skills. It has also been a nice way to stay connected during our two stints of remote learning, with some admirable teamwork occurring at both levels. A massive congratulations to all of the debaters who have participated in 2020. MS CLAIRE RUNCI & MS PHOEBE LORENZ

M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook





CLIMATE CHANGE AND COVID-19 AS WICKED PROBLEMS Students completed this unit of work in Term 2 during the first Melbourne lockdown and the first stint of remote learning in the Politics of Climate Change elective. SOL FAULKNOR - YEAR 8 CLIMATE CHANGE


The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are: there are multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas, straddle organisational and international boundaries, solutions are not right/wrong but better or worse. Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of fossil fuel companies and countries whose economies are based around fossil fuels having a vested interest in stopping climate action is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because these stakeholders will oppose climate action every step of the way and have created a persuasive campaign to stall climate action which has worked, and has been the main contributor to climate denial. This means that every climate action movement is met with tough opposition, and often does not come to fruition at all. The problems straddle organisational and international boundaries in the form of climate action needing to come from a coordinated global effort which accounts for factors such as climate justice is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because it is very difficult for nations to cooperate, especially when they believe their state will come out at a loss. This means that any global climate agreement is unlikely, and countries will often not live up to their promises. Solutions are not right/wrong but better or worse in the form of many climate action strategies having negative side consequences is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because there is no clear path forward and no right action. For example transferring to renewables will mean everyone previously working in the fossil fuel industry loses their job. What we must do is make sure that new job opportunities are made in the renewables industry.


The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are: every wicked problem is connected to others, solutions are not right/wrong but better or worse, can take a long time to evaluate solutions. Every wicked problem is connected to others in the form of COVID-19 coming from our widespread mistreatment of animals is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because rather than being an isolated issue, the coronavirus is the flagship for a much wider and more systematic problem. This means that in order to stop similar things happening in the future, we must change our entire system, which will be extremely difficult to make happen. Solutions are not right/wrong but better or worse in the form of shutting down economies, especially in developing countries having negative consequences is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because people in developing countries don’t have the same safety nets we have here, meaning that a large scale economic shutdown could lead to serious poverty and starvation. This forces leaders to make tough decisions where lives and livelihoods will be lost no matter what they do. It can take a long time to evaluate solutions in the form of the long timeline to find a vaccine, and the variables involved is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because we are unsure when or if we are going to find a vaccine. This means many people will die in and many people will lose their jobs while we search for one. Also it means that people like Donald Trump can spout nonsense about cures and some desperate people might actually believe him.

Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

HANNAH KLUGMAN KERR - YEAR 8 The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are conflicting stakeholders, no clear problem definition, problems straddling organizational and disciplinary boundaries. Multiple Stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of political gridlock is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because different states have different interests and this affects negotiations. Trump and the US want the solution to help the US economy while Australia wants a solution that allows for more jobs. Saudi Arabia wants a solution that helps their economy. This all affects which solutions states will support. There is no clear problem definition in the form of modelling on the climate crisis is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because the climate crisis is already very hard to predict, but the fact that there is no clear problem definition makes it significantly harder. Deaths caused by climate change are not always directly connected to emissions; it may be a long and tangled connection. For example Saudi Arabia’s economy is based on oil so when they have to transition to renewable energy are all the ensuing deaths because of poverty caused by the climate crisis? This may seem insignificant but the differing in amount of predicted deaths leads to denial and lies. Straddling organizational and disciplinary boundaries in the form of global cooperation is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because The climate crisis is a global crisis and it will affect the whole world however global negotiations like the COP conferences keep having unsuccessful results. COP24 got to the point where the countries agreed on a rule book to help countries to stick to the Paris agreement. However they did discuss the key question of how countries will increase their targets, on current targets we are set for 3c of warming. During that time The US, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait joined forces to disrupt the science and Australia also joined the celebration of coal and Brazil refused to host cop25.




The three elements that make C19 a wicked problem are Multiple Stakeholders with conflicting agendas, Straddle organizational and disciplinary boundaries, Every wicked problem is connected to others.

Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of Governments vauling economy over health is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because It is a denialism technique that could cost lives and affect how many people have the virus and how hard it is to fight the virus. For example Trump insisted that Covid 19 was under control/ non-existent. Trump and his supporters’ denialism soon mutated into fighting any cure using protecting the short-term economy as an excuse very similar to how he dismisses climate change solutions. Covid-19 went through all the denialism techniques in a matter of weeks. Denying the problem, denying the severity, saying the issue is too difficult/ expensive to fix and saying the solutions threaten freedom. Because Trump denied the problem and prioritised the economy any solution to COVID-19 will now cost more to the US as the virus has affected people in the US more. Because Trump prioritised the economy there was a lack of testing in the US, this meant that before the borders closed Americans who had the virus and hadn’t been tested could travel and spread the virus.

Straddling organizational and disciplinary boundaries in the form of global cooperation is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because Covid-19 is a global pandemic and will directly or indirectly affect all countries . However most countries are acting in self interest and not thinking of other countries. The global market for PPEand ventilators is like an unruly bidding war. Australia has had many orders taken by other countries before they could get to it. Australia’s chief scientist, Dr Alan Finkel said “It’s strange out there. It’s a little like what you’re seeing in hoarding in supermarkets at a national level.” While in the immediate reaction to Covid-19 fend for your country only strategies may work for some countries, if the world wishes to return to its state pre Covid-19 or even if just international travel and trade is going to resume international cooperation is required. Every wicked problem is connected to others in the form of economic and social decisions is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because Australia has spent quite a bit of its budget on Covid-19 and while the economy and jobs will be in the spotlight for Covid-19 recovery the government also needs of other wicked problems such as climate change. The economy has been severely affected by Covid-19 and a big amount of the budget has been spent, so the government will have to be creative in thinking of ways to integrate Covid-19 recovery and climate change solutions. One ABC opinion writer has suggested that the government work on upgrades to the energy system saying that so many people are staying home that now seems like the ideal time for some upgrades, schools electricity could be upgraded, giving schools efficient renewable energy would not only be great for the planet it would also decrease the government’s future energy bills. While the idea of creating jobs using new renewable energy projects would be a great way for the government to provide jobs and help keep the temperature under 2 degrees celsius is a great suggestion one thing is for sure the government will have to somehow integrate solutions for both Covid-19 recovery and climate change.

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The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are…. • Multi causal and interconnected • Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas • Every problem is connected to another Problems are multi-causal and interconnected in the form of the cause and effect of climate change is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because climate change has no clear cause or effect. All the effects of global warming seem distant, in time and in space, meaning that humans find it easier to avoid. The causes of climate change are also complex and unclear, giving people the ability to place the blame on someone else. Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of people in developing countries in contrast to different industries is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because so many different people and groups are indirectly or directly affected by climate change. For example, people in developing countries and coastal communities will be deeply impacted by climate change. Developing countries typically have warmer climates, as well as being highly dependent on climate sensitive industries such as tourism and agriculture. Coastal communities are already being displaced due to rising sea levels, and this problem will only continue to worsen. On the other hand, companies that are a part of industries such as the coal, plastic and motor vehicle industry all contribute to climate change, and would suffer if drastic, important action was taken. There are multiple sides to climate change, making it a wicked problem. Every problem is connected to another in the form of climate change and poverty is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because it has multiple effects that link to and impact other issues. For example, people living in poverty are more likely to be directly affected by climate change. Natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods in poor, developing countries can lead to people being displaced, making them climate refugees. Therefore, climate change and poverty are related and dependent on each other, meaning that to solve one, we must solve the other.


The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are…. • Every problem is connected to another • Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas • Solutions are not right/wrong, but better/worse Every problem is connected to another in the form of COVID-19 and unemployment is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because COVID-19 is connected to other issues, such as unemployment. With entire countries being in lockdown, businesses cannot survive and are being forced to close or significantly reduce their workforces. This is putting thousands and thousands of people out of work, meaning that they are unemployed. In a country like Fiji, this is a problem, because the cost of living is high and the government support is minimal. With little to no income families will struggle to support themselves and loved ones. After COVID-19, lots of small businesses will most likely not be able to get back on their feet, so the unemployment rate will remain high. Therefore, the issue of unemployment has been impacted by C19, making the two problems connected and dependent on each other. Multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of people who have been unemployed in contrast to the industries that are benefitting is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because different people and groups are benefiting or being disadvantaged by the pandemic. Hundreds of thousands of people are being put out of work due to the lockdown in response to the coronavirus. Lowered levels of income will impact both families and individuals negatively. Businesses and companies such as restaurants, bars and airlines are also being forced by the C19 restrictions to close. On the other hand, some industries will emerge from this crisis stronger. These include health care and food delivery, as they are now in high demand due to the pandemic. This crisis has positive and negative effects that impact different people. Solutions are not right/wrong, but better/worse in the form of the negative effects of the lockdown is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because the solution to covid 19 has had negative effects. While the lockdown is flattening the curve, lots of people have lost their jobs as a result of this, having a huge effect on the economy. As well as this, you have to take into account the impact that self isolation has on people’s mental health. Therefore, the solution to COVID-19 is not perfect, making it a wicked problem.

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CLIMATE CHANGE The three elements that make climate change a wicked problem are every problem is unique, there are multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas, and it is multi-causal, multi-scalar and inter-connected.

The three elements that make COVID19 a wicked problem are every problem is unique, there are multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas, and it is multi-causal, multi-scalar and inter-connected.

Every problem is unique in the form of different experiences is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because everyone will be affected by climate change in a different way. 60cm of sea level rise has been predicted for the next century, which will affect everyone, but some more so than others. Rising numbers of heavy local rainfall worldwide have also been predicted. Wealthier countries will be much better equipped to repair damage done to buildings, which will keep more people from becoming homeless. Some countries such as Fiji have economies that rely heavily on tourism, and this industry will be majorly affected by climate change. These things are all examples of how different countries experience things different, due to factors such as geography and wealth. This shows how climate change is a wicked problem because all these different scenarios require different resources to solve them. However, there is one thing that is needed for all of them, and that is commitment from the country’s government and population. This element is wicked in itself, as some countries require aid from outside sources, but these outside sources deny that there is even a problem to begin with.

Every problem is unique in the form of economic shutdowns is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because states with different levels of wealth will be affected by it differently. Fiji’s economy relies heavily on tourism. Nearly 40% of Fiji’s GDP comes from tourism. Last year, more tourists came to Fiji than there were residents living there. An economic impact that will be unlikely to recover for several years is looking unavoidable for them. So far during this pandemic, 25,000 Fijians have lost their jobs. This number could increase in the future, as the effects of COVID19 are difficult to predict. This shows how every problem is unique, as a developed country such as Australia will be able to bounce back from these economic shutdowns a lot easier than a developing country such as Fiji. COVID19 might impact these countries a lot more than we realise, and they may not receive outside aid because everyone is looking in on themselves.

There are multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of climate deniers is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because this problem cannot be solved without the cooperation of everyone. Climate deniers are often people or corporations who have something to lose from climate action, for example fossil fuel industries, or businesspeople who are unwilling to trade their leisurely life and easy profit for something more complicated. These people are stakeholders because they will be affected by climate change in one way or another, but they would prefer to just ignore it and keep living the same old lives. These deniers are able to gain momentum through making random stuff up. The Australian bushfires are a great example. These deniers claimed that over 100 of the fires were actually caused by arson, when all the experts were saying that it was actually climate change. By spreading rumours like this around, the deniers are able to gain momentum, and their agendas are back on track as everyone starts talking about rumours instead of talking about facts. Wicked problems are multi-causal, multi-scalar and interconnected in the form of increased poverty worldwide is a wicked problem in addressing climate change because this problem is going to affect every other aspect of life sooner or later. The Himalayas provide water for 1 billion people, and they are melting. 50% of humanity could be living with fresh water shortages in the next quarter century. Many jobs will be lost as industries such as tourism collapse due to habitat destruction. With an increasingly large unemployed/homeless population, it will become increasingly difficult for states to keep up a quality income. Major economic disruptions are a given. The way that these things interconnect shows how the line between climate change’s action and consequences is long and tangled, which makes it much easier for world leaders to doubt themselves while making major decisions. All these problems that are part of climate change can go ahead ignored, because so much confusion can be caused about how they are all interconnected.

There are multiple stakeholders with conflicting agendas in the form of states looking inwards is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because there are many countries who will require outside aid, but will not receive it because everyone wants to save their money and resources for themselves. The shutting down of borders and slowdown of international trade is something that has not been witnessed in several decades. The idea that it may never return to what it used to be is terrifying for a lot of economies who rely heavily on the industry. Some developing countries will struggle to get back on their feet after this, and help from wealthy states seems unlikely as they are all trying to save themselves.

Wicked problems are multi-causal, multi-scalar and inter-connected in the form of economic shutdowns is a wicked problem in addressing C19 because climate change and COVID19 are more connected than we think. At the beginning of this pandemic, millions were quarantined in China and the economy basically shut down. This meant no transport of any kind on the road, public or private. Now we are seeing the effects of this, as China’s CO2 emissions have temporarily decreased by a quarter, and the air pollution has cleared the sky. COVID19 has shown us a way to start the climate change action that our world desperately needs, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that we will take it once the pandemic is over.

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One of the maths classes has been investigating the progress of the corona virus. The challenge was to advise the government as to the possible effects of the virus through predicting the new number of cases of the virus there would be on the next day and successive days. To do this they had to have data (Wikipedia reports the number of cases daily based on Chinese official data), enter that data into a spreadsheet such as excel, use that package to calculate parameters such as % increase over various time intervals, plot graphs and try to model a mathematical function to the data. The latter proved difficult but the exercise gave the class some insight into the practical applications of school maths.

Unprecedented, the year we are having. Exponential, the way the virus cases are growing. The term has been used ad nauseum this year. What does it mean? Yes the numbers are going up at a steep rate. Ah, there is another term, rate.

As a further note on the significance of this sort of maths in the financial world of investing I came across the following in AFR: ‘…wise investors know the drop in economic activity will not be permanent, says Leonardo Drago, co-founder at Singapore’s AL Wealth, which provides investment and fund management services to a select group of institutional investors and family offices. ‘From his office high in Millennia Tower, Mr Drago has a commanding view of the container ships queuing up in Singapore’s harbour, but it’s a logarithmic chart plotting out the rate of new infections and the case-fatality rate of COVID-19 that anchors his read on the crisis. ‘The rate of virus progression has slowed in recent weeks, notwithstanding new clusters in South Korea, Italy and Iran, and the fatality rate outside China is now 0.8 per cent. Together, these two factors suggest that, like previous pandemics such as SARS, COVID-19 is likely to fizzle out. ‘“My projection is it will be all over by the northern summer. There are still risks of course, but it becoming less and less of an unknown,” Mr Drago said.’


Exponential refers to a mathematical function where the value say virus numbers y equals some number a raised to a power say y = ax where x is the time from the start. X is the power, index, exponent also called a logarithm. In this case a is a constant and x and y are variables. Senior maths classes at MAC have been studying these functions, sometimes in relation to the virus numbers. Modelling of the virus numbers using exponential functions has been carried out in a similar way to the modellers who have been trying to fit a mathematical model, a function, to the historical numbers and trying to predict the effect of changing conditions such as the amount of contact between people on the future numbers and hence making recommendations to the powers that be. A far cry from modelling clothes on a catwalk or building a replica of an aeroplane. Transformations of the basic exponential function such as y = k. abx + c + d give dilations and translations of the simple exponential function and are investigated to see whether they fit the actual data better. The VCE Math Methods Unit 2 class have presented posters on the exponential and log functions some of which have used virus numbers as their basis. These posters are on display in the ground floor corridor at MAC near G023. Posters are a more and more common way for mathematicians and scientists to present their research to their colleagues and the public rather than in journal papers. The VCE Math Methods Unit 3 4 class had to work on this sort of modelling during one of their SACs earlier in the year. The specific number e for a in the above functions is one of the irrational numbers like π and is a very important number in the maths science and economics world. Its value is approximately 2.72. it is very special in that its derivative, the instantaneous rate of change, at a point is equal to the value at the point. It is also the base for the natural log function the loge or ln button seen on many calculators, rather than the log10 function used for pH.

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Marine Biology went on a virtual excursion to the Smithsonian Natural History Museum. They had to find organisms belonging to each section of the marine exhibit. The students found it pretty interesting and it was a cool take on an excursion when we are so isolated. Students were then given the choice of ten experiments to complete at home and to create a practical poster on. All of these experiments related back to marine biology/ water properties in some way: • create a water filter

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interactions between water and oil density of saltwater ocean currents ocean acidification on shells creating plastic alternatives from milk surface tension and adhesion of water water flow and pressure water cycle in a jar oobleck. MS STEPHANIE BALABORUV, MARINE BIOLOGY TEACHER, HEAD OF ARTEMIS HOUSE


Biology is a challenging and engaging subject in which students have an opportunity not only to gain knowledge and learn about cutting edge technologies but also to experience what it’s like to be a scientist on their own. As part of the Unit 3 biology outcomes students need to plan, conduct and analyse the results of a scientific investigation. At MAC, students plan their own experiments, on a topic of their choice, within the areas of the study design. This year, students investigated a variety of topics including: activity of liver enzymes, respiration in yeast and photosynthesis in water plants using different light colours. Students learn the theory, experience the hardship of planning a valid experiment and evaluate their own efforts, all of which gives them some insight into what it means to be a scientist. MS MIRIAM FELDSHER-BERKOVICH, BIOLOGY TEACHER


On May 14 our Medicine and Disease class led by Ms Berkovich had a visit from two guests Dr Kudzai Kanhutu and Anne Yusuf. Dr Kudzai is an Infectious disease physician/telehealth consultant and Anne is an environmental scientist. These guests attended our Zoom session to tell us about their work and introduce us to how a career in STEM subjects can look like.

Dr Kudzai specialises in infectious diseases but she told us that before becoming a doctor she wanted to be an actor or a singer. She also told us she had decided to become a doctor due to her passion and love for medicine and science ever since she was exposed to it by her family in Zimbabwe when she was very little. Anne on the other hand is an environmental scientist who has told us she researches micro plastic and peat soils, as well as that these peat soils are formed by partially decomposed plant material which can store carbon! Which means that can be quite beneficial towards the fight to reverse the effects of climate change. These two amazing people had come and spoken to us about how they had become involved in the field of science and medicine and what it took to get there, as well as a little bit of backstory and how it was like moving to Australia and then getting settled in. It was an honour being able to hear their stories from a student’s perspective, and I as a student have felt that it was a rewarding experience to be able to relate to and understand their field of study and life growing up. Thanks to these two I have gained a newly found interest within the world of science and I know my fellow peers might just feel the same way. BILHAH RYAN

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During previous years other award recipients have participated in completing their First Aid, community projects, leadership modules, organising excursions and incursions to develop leadership, organisation and teamwork skills. All of which help develop a deep understanding of volunteerism and community service. Throughout this challenging year the class has faced some obstacles, but thanks to the award leader and students they have managed to go above and beyond. By connecting, advising and teaching through the zoom theory classes students have been able to learn about safety in the outdoors in preparation for their Adventurous camp next year. Despite the hurdles of keeping active at home they were provided home workouts to stay on top of their physical health. Including encouragements of keeping active, which are tracked through the Duke of Ed online record logbook. This program offers memorable opportunities for students. By developing skills, becoming physically active and providing service and adventure. In this class, students are awarded a bronze medallion for their first year, silver medallion for their second year and gold medallion for their third all whilst completing the requirements of each section. Students gain more than a globally distinguished award, but will also complete their first aid and receive their first-aid certificate. This prestigious award is highly admired in CV, applications and jobs.


As previously stated the physical, community service and skills are designed and adapted by the students for their personal preferences. Aside from these the Adventurous journey is also included at the end of the year to meet the certificate specifications. Participants decided their program which offers structures to achieve their aspirations. Alongside each section and safety requirements for the Adventurous Journey Section, all selected activities are entirely up to the participant. They have the flexibility to advance through the program and adjust it to any of their needs and abilities.



On Friday during Period 2 on February 14 our House Sports (Thomas, Ava, Jerry and Dylan) and Inter-School Sports Captains (Ryan and Riley) ran our first whole school Inter-House Competitions. Year levels participated in a round robin of activities including dodgeball, tug-o-war, egg and spoon race and three legged race with the primary purpose of winning House points. The House spirit was definitely on show with Houses scoring the following points: Athena: 320, Poseidon: 250, Apollo: 210, Artemis: 180. Students had a great time participating in the activities and the Student Leaders should be commended for their leadership and organisation of the event. SOLOMON FAULKNER


Our 2020 cricket carnival got off to a rocky start when we lost a string of early wickets in our first match. Shearsy and Sam came out lower down the order, steadying the ship with a gem of a partnership. They were finally dismissed after some good hitting. A turn of fortune saw us bat well first up in our second game. Thomas Morrisy blasted a blistering 59 runs, with Ryan making a classy 33. Dylan Orme made a controversial decision as umpire to give Riley run out. We closed out the match with some good clutch bowling at the death; Miranda taking two consecutive wickets, and Ryan finishing the match on a hat-trick. Judging from our performance in the second match, I reckon this team might be looking at finals next year. Go MAC! SOLOMON FAULKNER


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On Tuesday 18 March, MAC had its first Whole School Event of the year, the Swimming Carnival. Students had to dress up in house colours to support and win points for their team. The day began at school where we met up got our names ticked off and headed straight to Queens park. When all teams arrived the competition began. Participants competed against their year levels in their gender category. There were events such as; freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly and including novelty events. Everyone was free to choose what they would like to do. Throughout the day there was music, cheering and rain. Even though the weather wasn’t the best, everyone had an amazing day. BILHAH RYAN








On 10 March a wonderfully energetic group of students joined Ms Stephens for the Moonee Valley District Swimming Carnival. The event was held at Queens Park and we were all grateful for the sunshine. MAC were a small team but showed amazing levels of effort and a positive attitude. With a little encouragement and some critical feedback, Jacinta and Marcella’s announcing improved tremendously throughout the morning and I have no doubt they’ll be requested to do such a role in the future. There were numerous place holders in the team however Lola Featherby was our star performer, winning her 50 metre freestyle event. MS JULIE STEPHENS

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On Thursday March 12 MAC held our annual Open Day. There was once again huge interest in MAC and our unique approach to teaching and learning with prospective students and families attending in large numbers for the morning, midday and evening sessions that were offered. During the day and evening Erin, Inas, David, Lotte, Haniyah, Sol, Riley, Reeds, Tahlia, Bilhah, Nasteho, Alex, Eleanor, Violet and Ava in their roles as student leaders led and facilitated the school tours which provided prospective students and families a birds eye view of what teaching and learning looks like here at MAC. The evening ran a little differently with the inclusion of the school tour as well as a student panel, staff panel and subject showcase. Again, with the intention of informing attendees about the MAC way of life. The student leaders unsurprisingly performed amazingly in their role fielding questions about their experience being a student here at MAC and informing prospective students and families. One particular student when asked why MAC, they said that they feel like they belong here at MAC, that opportunities are more easily able to be offered and taken because of the small size of the school and also because the teachers and whole school learning community respect and value the role of young people in shaping, creating and influencing MAC’s school community. A huge thank you to all other students who assisted during the day with special mention to the students who assisted with the student panel, ushering and the running of the subject showcases. Thank you also to all staff who also assisted throughout the day and evening. MS M DUNLEY

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M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


REMOTE LEARNING LIFE We asked our Student Leadership Team to tell us about the ups and downs of remote learning. Here’s what some of them had to say.


Hi everyone, Jerry here and I’m just going to reflect on my online learning experience. For me it was great I handed in more coursework and I found myself more productive at home than at school and the benefits a sleep in how good is that. Anyway this is a picture of my study space hope everyone found it productive as well. JERRY NG

“Adjusting to remote learning life has been a challenge for most. Personally I have struggled being away from friends and the routine of school has been hard. Although remote learning isn’t my preferred learning environment, there have been some positives! Learning from home means I can stay in comfy clothes, it has also given me a lot of free time to keep in touch with friends through social media. Remote learning definitely has been a good learning experience but I honestly can’t wait till we go back to normal school life.” LOTTE VAN HULSEN

“At first I was like oh my gosh I am so scared that I am going to do something wrong or mess something up. But then I realised remote learning is fun and not that hard so I believe I have adjusted really well. There has been some challenges but that’s what you can expect sometimes when you try something new I believe that I am not the only person with this challenge but I think that the work load is fine the challenging part is having to hand it in like the exact same day as you where assigned it.I have talked to some friend or two and they think that online learning is fun.” FLORA BREWER BLAKE

“Things that have worked well for me are knowing what I am doing in the class and getting to my zoom meetings on time. Some things that are better than what I thought is that it is easier to get my work done and I am not distracted even though I have so many things around me that would distract me. Some challenges that I have found are not being able to get into zoom because it was saying the password was wrong. The way I got over that is by saying it on the google classroom so the teacher can send me a new link. All of my friends are enjoying the fact that we can learn at out homes and we can still communicate even though it isn’t in person.” HILARY MENARD


Yeah, It’s weird being somewhere else and still going to school… I’m in Bangladesh, which has a 4 hour time difference, and it’s lucky for me, because with daylight savings time also, it would’ve been 5 hours. I wake up at 4:30 every single morning to get to remote school on time, then it’s what you would do (assuming you are a student) every single day until 3:20 pm (11:20 am for me), then it’s anything I want to do until 8:30 pm, then it’s bedtime, and it is that early so that I get about 8 hours of sleep, which is about what I need my self as an individual. Usually, I take an hour nap after school, then wake up at 12:30 pm, and then go about my normal day for 8 hours, playing video games, completing assignments, watching the television etc., and midst the breaks, I like to play video games or whatnot, just like a normal person. Lockdown is also not the best, but we are allowed to go outside for supplies but in Bangladesh, no one wants to go outside for anything but supplies, unless you do extracurricular activities, which I don’t myself, but my aunt’s house is nearby so sometimes we go there, and it is legal, as we are allowed to visit family members, and yeah, that’s my life in a nutshell, and it’s not all bad, but weekends is the best because I can sleep in-No Remote Schooling.

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not travelling not wearing uniform listen to music while working eating while learning (particularly first period) • eat and listen to music in class • eat in class—really liked hot food while working in class time • more ownership over learning which means can finish work at their own pace

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and sometimes means leave class early catch up day was quite good to selfmanage workload and would be appreciated by students if this was continued when school returns to face-to-face learning less distractions really liked having freedom to leave home and walk in break (would like more opportunities for physical ercise during breaks).

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Remote learning was a formalised chaos, as for being a year 7 and just starting high school it was tough. I was quite sound since I was using a whole bunch of devices near me however the work load felt like it was more than normal school. Even though most of the students went smoothly during remote learning sometimes the link won’t work or wifi wasn’t cooperating with you that day or you accidentally turned on your camera in a break-out room. Nevertheless it had its ups, for example you could eat whenever you want just make sure your camera wasn’t on and wear whatever you want. You couldn’t wear your pyjamas so the common trend was hoodies. Some teachers attempted to have fun in a zoom call such as showing our pets or relatable memes, but overall they still kept up their attitude even though it felt like no one was listening. Predominantly, online schooling was a challenge but I am very fortunate to have Mount Alexander to have provided me easy to understand work and extremely fortunate to have an accessible device at home.

Going to shops was the only reason I would be going out unless it was going for a walk or exercising. Attempting to go to your local Woolies or Coles was like getting drafted to go to an upcoming World War 3. When you were entering the groceries you would have to be bringing hand sanitizer or buying some yourself. There were large stickers or tape on the ground indicating social distancing which is obviously 1.5 metres. When numerous restrictions lifted one by one it was like lifting a cage with hundreds of animals free, it was hectic especially if it was on the TV. When trying to go in the store it was like dodging the numerous bullets coming from different directions. To justify it was quite a hectic way of facing coronavirus which I will never forget. JUSTINE ESCANO


“Thanks to all the amazing teachers and staff at Mount Alexander College. You are doing a fabulous job. My (noisy) child is enjoying classes! Great work MAC as ever!!” “Fantastic!” “Big thumbs up too. Congratulations MAC and thank you for all the hard work and planning that has obviously been put in place.” “Impressive!” “Well done to all the teachers!! You are all doing such an awesome job!!” “My son who has autism is finding it really nice. He is working hard and even though he struggles to understand everything and get the technology working he is trying his best to keep up. He is really enjoying working alone without the noise and distractions haha.” “Well done to all the teachers.” “Thank you to all the wonderful teachers at such a hard time.” “As a parent I feel that home schooling is moving along nicely. Transitions been easy and I also believe my sons able to manage his work better with less distractions.” “Keep up the great work Mac” “I’m very impressed at how smoothly yesterday went! My son seems focused and motivated – this could be his best term yet!” “I’ve been impressed at how well the online learning went yesterday. My daughter was so engaged and happy to be learning again. Thanks for all the hard work!!” “Both my boys were really looking forward to remote learning & they were not disappointed. MAC is doing a great job amidst all this uncertainty.” “I think it’s been a really impressive starting point: what could have been disaster has gone well and I think that’s a credit to the school leadership team and support staff, the teachers and equally our children who have all shown a willingness to adapt and do things differently. Well done MAC team. Imagine the resilient, innovative and agile community we’ll be when we come through the other side!!!” “Well done MAC teaching and support staff ” “Thanks to everyone for a smooth transition to online learning. Teachers working remotely, teachers volunteering to go to school to supervise, the admin team, leadership. You’re all amazing. I know how hard you’ve all worked over the holidays to get this up and running and we are all learning as we go, so THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.” “I’m honestly shocked at how well this is working.”

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Undoubtedly, 2020 has been a tough year for everyone let alone International Students, who are away from their families, studying in a foreign country in a foreign language. Most of the time this was remotely. Regardless of the difficulty, it didn’t stop them from striving and working hard to achieve their goals. We (the International Students’ Support Team) are extremely proud of our cohort and are continuously playing the support roles so that our students can live toward their full and true potential. During the first wave of COVID-19, we made sure we worked with all students in educating and communicating the necessary steps to minimise the chances of coming in contact with the virus. This also provided their families and relative back home that the students were well equipped to keep themselves safe. This made the second wave easier for the students as they had put in place health and hygiene practices during the first wave as well as a number of strategies to keep their minds and bodies healthy during lockdown. We have had to adapted our approach this year, focusing more on wellbeing and safety of students, their relatives, immediate families (both in Australia and overseas) and their homestay hosts. During the first wave in March, we prepared small gifts, which included masks and gloves in case they were needed to use on public transport. This was three months before the compulsory use of masks. We also offered assistance with getting masks, gloves and hand sanitiser for homestay hosts. The homestay hosts were appreciative of our efforts and for many this was a huge help. Understandably our parents overseas were anxious and concerned about their children’s safety. They wanted to know that their children were safe and healthy. We were in regular phone contact firm, as well as sending personal messages and group chat messages to relay news and updated rules and safety measures taken by the school and implemented by the State Government. We were often answering many late phone calls from parents, and were happy to do that in order to give them peace of mind their children were safe and being supported by the school. Lockdown restrictions meant that we had to adapt our homestay inspections. Our six-monthly inspections were carried out via Zoom Video Conferencing. The updated and department-approved forms were used during the inspections to ensure that all important safety screening and wellbeing aspects were covered. Working with Children Checks for all homestays were also cross-checked to ensure that students were in a safe living environment. We made sure homestay hosts were communicating the same goals as the school in relation to the use of masks and gloves, as well as hand washing/sanitising routine. During the first lockdown, we had guest speakers from the Federation of Chinese Association who delivered an interactive wellbeing session for all the international students. Questions regarding diet, stress, physical activities, and emotional flexibility enable the support team to tailor supports to individual students. Furthermore, during remote learning, we continuously contacted students via phone calls and messages to ensure that they were safe and their stress was manageable.


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Enrolment of new students was also been different this year. We were not able to conduct any formal orientation for some new students. Some International Students started their educational journey at MAC remotely. While it was a tough start, they demonstrated resilience and determination. Indeed, some new International Students were actively contributing during remote learning that, without a doubt, somewhat enriched their learning experience at MAC. However, this could not be done without the support from all the staff.

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To maintain student’s engagement, we created challenges (such as push up challenges), cooking recipes, photo competitions and more. During the period of mid-autumn festival, the school organised mooncake sets, which were personally delivered to each student. We encouraged students to share the mooncakes with their host families and housemates. Lastly, we also introduced the Careers and Pathways Coordinator and Student Wellbeing Coordinator to the students and encouraged them to reach out when they needed.



Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


2020 House Points: 3313 2020 Apollo House Captains: Lola Lane Tan Brynn Valentine


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


2020 House Points: 3654 2020 Artemis House Captain Maya Barr


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


Swimming Carnival Winner 2020 House Points: 4126 2020 Athena House Captains: Ella Klassen Tahlia Dowell


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


House Cup Winners 2020 House Points: 4279 2020 Poseidon House Captains: Brendon Henry Lotte Van Hulsen


Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


Invictus by William Ernest Henley Out of the night that covers me, Black as the pit from pole to pole, I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade, And yet the menace of the years Finds and shall find me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.





Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook


M ou n t Alex an der Colleg e 2020 Yea rb ook


MAC 2020 empowering students


167-175 Mount Alexander Road, Flemington, VIC 3031 9376 1622 mountalexandercollege.vic.edu.au mount.alexander.712@education.vic.gov.au Mou n t A l exa nd er Col l eg e 2020 Yea rb ook

Profile for Mount Alexander College

2020 Yearbook