St Michael’s College is a Catholic School in the Lasallian tradition, committed to the human and Christian Education of the young especially the poor, through Community, Challenge and Choice. We are an inclusive and respectful community where each individual is known valued and cared for, enabling students to feel confident to explore their curiosities, flourish and fully realise their potential. Working in partnership with Barkuma is a clear example of us living out our Mission and Vision with our students and families.
On Thursday, 11 February I was privileged and delighted to be invited to the Barkuma Transition Class of 2020. I attended this event with our VET Coordinator Mr Kevin Woolford, which was held at the Adelaide Convention Centre. We were there to support one of our graduating students Harrison (Hass) Hosie. The MC for the evening was Lucy Cornes and the guest speaker was retired Port Power Player, Justin Westhoff.
The evening showcased that Barkuma, a non- profit and self-funded program, supported over 39 Year 12 students across 20 metropolitan and country schools in 2020. The transition program gives students the choice and control of their future as they prepare to leave high school. A proportion of the program was conducted online in 2020 and many of the students attended TAFE to obtain certificates across a range of specialty areas.
The highlight of the evening was when Hass was given the opportunity to come to the podium and to address his peers, staff and guests about his transition journey. Throughout 2020 he was able to complete a Certificate II in Retail and in 2021 he has enrolled to complete his Certificate III in Retail. His dream is to work in retail in the field of fashion.
Hass was clear that at times he found school tough, but the transition program enabled him to better understand what opportunities there are for him as he moves into the workforce. Throughout Year 12 and the Transition Program, he was able to gain knowledge and confidence and is now ready to find a job. He has made many new friends and connections with a range of businesses and finds that he can make friends much easier and is sad to leave St Michael’s College as he loved the staff and students. We reminded Hass that he is always welcome to come back at any time and if he wanted to could can continue to support the Eco Squad. Hass is now thriving and feeling that he is no longer as anxious or stressed and is far more social around his peers and friends. He has made many friends and is very thankful for the teachers who cared for him and his support workers at Barkuma. During his speech he referred to his idol Taylor Swift, and used a quote from one of her song Ours:
“People throw rocks at things that shine”.
Hass is now confident to take on the next part of his life and we thank him and his family for their support throughout his schooling here at St Michael’s College and we wish him the very best in his future endeavours.
Mr Matthew Williams, Acting Deputy Principal Pastoral
Vocational Educational and Training (VET) remains a popular option within our senior years, with approximately 45% of Year 10, 11 and 12’s undertaking a VET Course. Apart from the traditional trade areas, students have participated in courses in Information Technology, Fitness, Hospitality, Food Technology, Game Design, Photography, Business, Dance, Animal Studies, Child Education & Care, Individual Support and Public Safety Search and Rescue. In many instances, these have acted as a transition from school to the world of work and given students a ‘taste’ of an industry area and helped to explore potential career paths.
In the traditional trade areas of construction, automotive, plumbing and electrical, 87% of our Year 12’s who applied in 2020 were successful in gaining an apprenticeship and we congratulate them on their success.
One such success story is by electrical student Jacob Cleland (2020) who completed a Certificate II in Electronics at PEER Training. Jacob won an apprenticeship at TAE Aerospace, working on aeroplanes and defence aircraft.
In their Newsletter, TAE wrote “we are happy to have Jacob here with us at TAE Aerospace. We know he is going to be a valuable addition to our team and are looking forward to the positive impact he is going to have here.” Congratulations Jacob!
Mr Kevin Woolford – VET Coordinator
Let us now welcome God’s Word into our hearts. Come now, O Word of God. Return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; rend your hearts and not your clothing. (Joel 2: 12 – 13)
Beginning Lent with its call to fasting, weeping, and mourning may not sound at all appealing to us this year. Since the coronavirus began sweeping across our country almost a year ago, haven’t we done enough of that? Perhaps never in our lives have we fasted so much from hugging family members and physically touching our friends, from gathering together in clubs, choirs, sports arenas, restaurants, and churches. Maybe you have lost a loved one, and you still can’t stop weeping. Even if you haven’t lost someone you know, our country and world are collectively mourning the pandemic’s rising death toll, the economic devastation it has created, and the political divisiveness it has spawned. Our hearts have been broken in so many ways this past year that perhaps God isn’t calling us to more mourning, weeping, and fasting this Lent, maybe instead the invitation is to merely return to God with our entire hurting, weary selves.
Gracious God, we know that you are here, and we have taken your Word into our hearts. You call us to conversion, we who are here in this place, and we are ready to welcome you into our lives. We are ready, we are willing, and we are yours. So we now surrender to you our aches and longings.
May the season of Lent be a time when we grow closer to God and reflect on our lives in light of the Easter Messages.
Mr Robert Dempsey, Director of Mission
MISSIONARIES OF THE SACRED HEART (MSC) OUTREACH NEWSLETTER
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