Applications for 2021 Tertiary Courses are now open

The Victorian Tertiary Admissions Centre (VTAC) is now accepting applications for study in 2021 at Victorian TAFE and universities. All Year 12 students, parents, and carers have been sent instructions on how to create an account and list their preferences for courses next year. Students are also able to apply for the Special Entry Access Scheme (SEAS) and scholarships. Applications are also open in other states and territories as well as direct applications to some tertiary institutions. For more information and resources to support your daughter in creating her account and beginning her application, please click here. Please encourage your daughter to make an appointment to discuss her pathway choices with our Pathways Leader if she would like some assistance. If you have questions about the process, please get in touch with our Pathways Leader, Grace Gonzalez ( For up-to-date information about pathway options, please subscribe to our MSJ Pathways Newsletter here and check out our MSJ Pathways website.

Click HERE to view 2020 VTAC / SEAS Information & Resources

Family Tuition Accounts

For those families that do not have a regular, scheduled payment arrangement in place, we would kindly remind you that your fees should be approximately 85% settled by the end of August (as we aim to have fees paid in full by September).

Families paying by term instalments should note that the final instalment is due 28 September 2020.

If you have been adversely affected by COVID-19 and wish to confidentially discuss financial assistance, we encourage you to contact our accounts department (Tel: 8398 2001 / email:

Danny O’Malley - Business Manager

Debating via Zoom

Over the past few weeks, some of MSJ’s debating teams have had the opportunity to compete in the DAV debating competition. Due to COVID-19, the competition involving teams from schools in the Western region have had to debate using Zoom. So far, our debating team has participated in two debates over Zoom, meaning that we have had to adapt to new circumstances, entailing adjusted rules and unfamiliar territory.

As well as these conditions, this year was our team’s first experiences of having an advised and secret topic. This meant our team only had one hour prior to the debate commencing to prepare our research, speeches and rebuttals all from separate homes. We all worked really well together and produced some great speeches and arguments on topics including, ‘There should be no minimum age for social media accounts’ and ‘That periodic blood donation should be made compulsory.’ Despite all of this, it was a great experience, providing us with some sort of ‘normal’ during these very crazy and unpredictable times. Thanks to Ms Skahill for her ongoing support and assistance.

Ciara Nolan Year 10

Year 9 ICONIC Program

The Year 9 ICONIC program aimed to make the MSJ community aware of specific issues around them. The students had to present their ideas in a creative presentation such as a podcast, movie, etc. I discussed the major issue of women being under represented in STEM careers and how more girls should participate in STEM. I presented this issue in a podcast I created called, "Talk Nerdy". My goal for this project was to make more girls aware about women in the STEM field.

Many of my peers dedicated last semester and the beginning of this term for their project and put much effort into it. I am so happy with how the virtual exhibition turned out and I congratulate my peers for their hard work. Due to the current pandemic, the exhibition of our projects had to go virtual. Even though this was a very different experience, it was still incredible. It was amazing to see the effort put in by the teachers and by all students. I enjoyed the whole experience and I would like to do it again. Overall, the ICONIC project was a 100% great experience and I am glad that students discussed the significant issues of our society.

Vedangi Khanna 9C

Quarantine Harmony Day

As part of the Bulldogs Youth Leadership Program, Angelica Victorio and I decided to create a "Quarantine Harmony Day" where students could submit photos and videos celebrating their cultures.

Angelica and I decided in addition to collaborating all of the students' responses into a short video, we will also be creating a digital poster of a map with pinpoints of where students' cultures come from. Surrounding the map on the poster will be students' responses to the question: What does intercultural understanding mean to you?


We know many of our fellow classmates must have been really disappointed to hear about the extended quarantine restrictions, so with the help of the Bulldogs Youth Leadership Program we have taken the leap to try and bring students together through appreciation of cultures!

Dress up in traditional clothing, show off some yummy food or demonstrate a cultural activity through a short video or photo for a new HARMONY DAY DURING QUARANTINE.

All photos and videos will be organised into a compilation to be presented on the MSJ website, so be ready to show the love for your culture by Saturday 22 August!


In addition to the cultural video/photo parade, here are some cool informational websites to check out made by yours truly:

Fun Facts about Filipino Culture & Culture Wisdom: a guide to the cultures in Melbourne

Why is it important to spread your culture?

Intercultural understanding is an essential part of living with others in the diverse world of the twenty-first century. It cultivates values and dispositions such as:

  • communicate across cultures and help prevent racism
  • consideration and development of multiple perspectives amongst a community
  • empathising with others and their cultural experiences

We cannot wait to see the results!

Isabella Fiumara & Angelica Victorio Year 9

Isabella with the popular Italian card game called Scopa

The Show Must Go On

An update from the Performing Arts

To help fight the Covid Blues, our Arts Captain, Tia Stewart, has been doing a tremendous job keeping the College community engaged through her Arts blog in the weekly MSJ Connect newsletter. Last week, our annual MSJ’s Got Talent went virtual. There were five amazing finalists, but Tara Mathews was voted as this year’s winner for her stunning rendition of 'The Death of Bachelor' by Panic at the Disco. Well done, Tara.

News from our Drama and Music classes

Ms Anastasi’s Year 9 Drama students' creativity is about to be tested. Students will be tasked with creating a virtual group performance in the style of Brecht's "Epic Theatre". We are very much looking forward to seeing their work develop. Mrs Runciman welcomed back Amy Smedley, last year’s Dux of Drama. Amy conducted workshops with the Year 12’s on creating a solo performance for their upcoming performance examination. By all accounts, the workshops were invaluable and have bolstered their confidence.

The Year 8 Music classes have entered the realm of video game music. They have been creating original characters, composing leitmotifs and adding sound effects to enhance their games. Mr Laird’s Year 9 students are learning how to write original songs and currently developing their own Electronic Press Kits (EPKs), while the Year 12 Music students have been developing their stagecraft skills in preparation for their upcoming Family and Friends Music Night.

It has been a very trying time for everyone but we couldn’t be prouder with the way the students and teachers have adapted to our ever-changing world to keep the Performing Arts alive and well at MSJ.

This is the description of Mary’s Year 8 Drama performance video…

The aim of our melodrama performance was to use a short script and create interesting characters, a hero, a damsel and a villain. To help make our characters seem more believable and lifelike, we learnt about the four main expressive skills during class; voice, facial expressions, gestures and movement, and incorporated them into our performance. We also learnt about melodrama, what it is, what makes a performance a melodramatic performance, and what to incorporate in a melodrama performance. As we were in lockdown, we were able to use props and elements of costume, from home, to help portray our characters. We collaborated together as a group and practised our performance in a breakout room on zoom. Mrs Cassar joined us and gave us some feedback, then workshopped some more editing and making changes before our final performance.

Lucy English Year 8

2020 Peace Exchange Program

I chose to participate in the virtual exchange program with the Seirei students who missed out on coming to Australia. In Week 1, I started to email with my virtual exchange student, Maki. We talked about music and discussed the instruments that we played as well as bands/songs that we liked. We also talked about school (our favourite subjects, etc.), foods that we liked and family.

We also decided that in Week 2 + 3 we would use Line as our communication tool. I had some troubles with downloading Line at first because I couldn’t create an account so I downloaded it on my iPad in time for our first video call on Saturday 8 August. We talked about school during COVID-19 and showed each other our desks as well as some of the activities that we do during our spare time.

It was really nice to be able to see Maki in person and get to talk about our hobbies and get a sense of how COVID is in other countries. During Week 3 of the program, we used Line to video call again, this time we showed each other a typical dinner as well as other foods and drinks that we enjoyed (I made the mistake of calling matcha, green tea) we also introduced family members/pets. Overall, I was really appreciative of this opportunity provided to me by Mr. Hayashi and I really enjoyed the experience.

Olivia Boyd 8G

Year 7 Food Technology LIVE brownie making

Mrs Sexton’s and Ms Stafrace’s Year 7 classes made chocolate brownies! It was a challenge baking from home, but we whipped up some fantastic brownies at the end of the lesson. The teachers helped both classes throughout the baking session and made it really easy and enjoyable to make. Around 52 girls cooking brownies via zoom - I think that's an MSJ’s first! We can’t wait for the next live class.

Shreya Chand & Poppy Wickham Year 7

Year 9 Friendship Zooms

At Mount St. Joseph we feel a strong sense of community and during the pandemic everyone has felt withdrawn. This project is made to help our friends in Year 9 feel closer and have quality time with their friends.

The original idea was to have a zoom at lunchtime monitored by teachers. Thanks to the collaboration with the Year 9 class captains we have refined the project into part of the Year 9 program. We sent out a google form to make groups of student friendship groups. After an incredible amount of teamwork and cooperation, all of the groups were formed and zooms were created by our Learning Mentors.

Staying connected to friends is an activity that can be forgotten, but still longed for. This allows you to have one thing to do: talk to friends. It is a project to allow social interaction for people. It was a wonderful and successful way to engage Year 9 students in social interaction.

In times like these, having contact and support from others is what will help us to get through this together. Not only did it benefit the students participating, but as Class Captains we got to engage and work with each other on a fun project that would help others. This opportunity allowed us to connect with students outside of our own friendship groups and engage with those who we may not have reached out to before.

Kesara Brocis-Reti & Jasmine Alderton (Yr 9 Class Captains)