As Term 1 comes to an end, the Student Leadership Team reflect on the term that was and provide a snippet of the exciting events that await us in Term 2.

Kate Lavers and Zara Curtis – College Captains

We kicked off 2023 with the annual opening school assembly, introducing the college theme, ‘Our Joy is in Our Belonging’, as well as the Student Leadership Team, and all of the new Year 7 students and staff. It was incredible to see the students return with such enthusiasm, as they fully immersed themselves in the experience of being together again.

The Opening School Mass was another significant part of Term One, as the students' attention was drawn to the beautiful scriptures, rituals, music, the rich silence and prayers of the assembly. In particular, this mass focused on celebrating the sense of community and belonging that is MSJ.

Some other highlights from the Term for us have been the incredible, record breaking, Swimming, and Athletics carnivals, wonderfully organised by the Wellbeing portfolio. The participation and enthusiasm from every single student truly made these events to remember. Our Ministry, Social Justice and Sustainability portfolios also did an amazing job in organising and running Harmony Day, St Patrick's Day and Lenten Activities. These helped bring our school community closer together and focus on everyone's individual stories, as well as their journey here at MSJ.

To wrap up what has been a hectic yet rewarding term for all students, was Activities week as well as the Year level camps that have occurred. This has seen all students get to know and understand their peers better and foster the joy that is in our belonging at school.

We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate those appointed as Class Captains for 2023. Thank you to all students who applied for this role, for putting yourself out there and embracing this amazing opportunity. We both cannot wait to begin working with you all this year.

Finally, we would like to wish everyone a blessed, safe, and happy Easter break. Please remember to take time for yourself, rest, have fun, and come back refreshed for the start of another jam-packed term ahead!

Bridget Munro – Wellbeing Leader

2023 has certainly been off to an excellent start for the Wellbeing portfolio after the amazing success of both our Swimming carnival and Athletics day. Throughout all my years here at MSJ, I must say I have never seen such extraordinary enthusiasm, especially at Athletics day with our record-breaking levels of participation. I want to say a huge thank you to each and every one of our students for being a part of such a vibrant celebration of our school spirit and community.

Although exhausted after the excitement and 40-degree temperatures of the swimming carnival, I had a really beautiful moment as I was sitting outside, when a little ladybug landed on my hand. After the MSJ community’s loss of Sue Sofarnos in 2020, her friends and family had said that she would come back and visit us as a ladybug. For those of you who do not know Sue, she was our beloved Sports Coordinator, but everyone who knew her would agree that she was so much more than that. She was a mentor, an advocate for women in sport, an inspiration, a mother figure and most of all, a friend.

Feeling her presence after my last MSJ swimming carnival was incredibly touching for me. For those of us who are old enough to remember, we know that Sue without fail every year pulled out her rainbow colours, dance moves and that infectious smile. We miss you more and more each day Sue, but we never forget that ‘We are MSJ!’

Kesara Brocas-Reti - Arts Leader

What an incredible start to the year it has been for the Arts Portfolio at MSJ. We started off the year running with rehearsals starting for our College musical, Legally Blonde Jr. Since then, the show is coming along very nicely, with our cast working hard on choreography, singing and acting. We cannot wait for you all to see the performance.

Another big moment for the Arts at MSJ was our announcement of the 2023 MMADD Day Theme, “If I Could Turn Back Time”. This was presented at the Catholic Education Week Assembly where a video was played and then our senior house captains got to choose their subcategory, decades ranging from 1960-2010. The results came out with McCormack having the decade of 1960's, Kincumber, the 1970's, Penola, the 1980's, Solomon, the 1990's, Cameron, the 2000's and Providence, the 2010's. These decades will inspire the Year 7 and Year 12 performance which is designed by our Senior House Leaders and performed on MMADD Day in front of the staff, students and judges, who will then decide who is awarded the MMADD Day Cup!

During Term 2 we have many more exciting things to come! Rehearsals for MMADD Day for MMADD Day on Friday the 2 June as well as rehearsals for the College musical. Work will also continue work on costuming, set designs and advertising, in preparation for our performances on the 4-5 of August. Keep an eye out for this exciting performance!

Prisha Anand – Academic/Applied Learning Leader

We have had an amazing start to our Academic portfolio this year!

This term we started our tutoring program, ACED IT Tutoring! Here, the students in older year levels were able to tutor and pass on their knowledge to students in younger year levels in certain subject areas. Having this togetherness between the different year levels through fostering each other’s learning has reflected a sense of belonging within our community!

Next term we have more exciting opportunities to look forward to including our Spelling Bee competition between houses, our Science Fair allowing all our students who are interested in Science to have a chance to display their experiments and learning, as well as a Book Donation Drive where students will be able to donate books to underprivileged children, and study clubs!

Stay tuned for messages in SIMON and on MSJ Radio.

Bella Fiumara – Ministry Leader

The Ministry Portfolio has seen an excellent start this year!

St. Patrick’s Day was celebrated on Friday 17 March. It was a day of celebration in which the MSJ community partook in activities which demonstrated their strong sense of faith. The day included a Highland Dance performance, shamrock tattoos, green accessories and a shared lunch while listening to Irish music!

The Ministry Portfolio has also been working hard to raise funds for Caritas Australia’s Project Compassion. Every donation (down to the very cent!) has helped alleviate poverty, promote justice, and uphold dignity in the most vulnerable and marginalised communities in the world. So far MSJ has helped raise over $2,990.80!

In addition to having physical Project Compassion charity boxes and online methods of donating, the Ministry Portfolio put together a GIANT Easter raffle! The Easter raffle has been a huge hit amongst staff and students alike, to raise funds for Project compassion with over 100 tickets sold. This has been a great initiative which brings two aspects of Catholic faith together, belief in the Resurrection and acting with preferential options for the poor and vulnerable.

Stay tuned on Simon and MSJ Connect as the raffle winners will be announced on Thursday 6 April!

Delaney Calder – Social Justice Leader

Social Justice Portfolio has seen a busy first Term of 2023, working with the WAAMSS in particular Ministry and Sustainability.

Harmony Day was celebrated on Thursday 16 March. With the MSJ community fully embracing cultural diversity, promoting inclusiveness, respect, and the idea that our differences unite us. The day included an amazing shared lunch filled with students' cultural foods and cuisines from all over the world. As well as face painting of flag colours by our amazing Supportive Friends in Year 11. We were also lucky enough to watch 5 extraordinary performances consisting of dancing, playing instruments and singing to celebrate the day.

We also held a casual clothes day to raise donations for the Türkiye and Syria Appeal, you can access that in the link below:

Issue of the Month: Türkiye & Syria Earthquake

In Term 2 we are excited for the reopening of Youth in Action Club, Reconciliation Week, World Hunger vlogs and many more. So, keep your eye out for all the fun activities coming to the MSJ community.

Jade Neary – Sustainability Leader

During Term 1, the sustainability portfolio organised National Ride2School Day, encouraging MSJ staff and students to take a form of active transport. Additionally, plans were made for the launch of MSJ’s sustainability, social justice and ministry advocacy group ‘Youth in Action’ and we cannot wait for its commencement at the start of Term 2! Students will be able to tend to the garden and plan initiatives for events, such as World Ocean Day and Plastic Free July on behalf of the Sustainability portfolio.

*Winners from our Ride2School Day ‘Best Picture’ competition*

Alice Imms and Vedangi Khanna - Co-curricular Leaders

The Co Curricular portfolio started off wonderfully in 2023, consisting of the school swimming and athletics carnival at the beginning of term, musical rehearsals and lunchtime activities everyday.

The lunchtime activities have been a stellar way for house leaders both juniors and seniors to engage the school community in sports, music and games during lunchtimes. Each day of term has offered a new and exciting activity for all students to participate in, and will continue as the year continues. A special mention also to the Yr 11 Sport and Recreation VET class, as they have continued to run the Tuesday walking program, which entitles all participants house points and is playing a key factor in the counting of the house cup.

The first term of the co-curricular portfolio has been heavily focused on the sport and the wellbeing sector of College life, celebrating the achievements of MSJ at CGSAV in Tennis, Indoor cricket and Swimming.

CGSAV Indoor Cricket saw three teams participate across the day, beginning early in the morning and travelling by bus to Box Hill Indoor Sports Centre, all of the teams saw success through the day, but only the seniors lead by team captain Kayla Britnell claimed an overall victory. MSJ’s close win over Kilbreda College saw the College's First Division 1 title in Indoor Cricket. Kayla not only led her team to victory but also won player of the day in her age group!

A special mention to coaches Alice Imms, Year 12 (Juniors), Mr Tom Dicker (intermediates) and Mr Mitch Piazza (Seniors).

As well as this, Year level activities like the yr 7 netball completion will get underway, an active way for new students to make friends and get exercise whilst building house pride.

CGSAV sports will also continue in term 2 including:

  • Fustal, 27 April
  • Badminton, 2 May
  • Basketball, 10 May
  • Basketball Juniors only, 16 May
  • Athletics, 18 May
  • Cross country, 6 June
  • Hockey, 14 June

Isabella Kendall - Cameron Arts Leader and Georgia Kikidis - Cameron Wellbeing Leader

What an AMAZING start to the year in term one for Cameron House. Over the term the house spirit has been through the roof, we have really bonded as a family, making friendships throughout both the older and younger year levels.

Cameron house the first few weeks of term came out with a BANG, decorating everything in orange, establishing CAMERON COUNTRY upstairs in the Pierce Building. Family Friday was brought back as well as regular pastoral visits to inform house members of exciting new activities and uplift house spirit.

Although the Swimming and Athletics carnival did not go our way, Cameron House definitely showed everyone who we are with our enthusiasm and large amounts of house spirit.

With MMADD day fast approaching, Cameron House is ready to show the MSJ community how we are going to dominate the dance floor with the theme of 2000’s, winning the MMADD cup for the second year in a row?


Neha Arumalla – Kincumber Arts Leader and Sophie Aitchison - Kincumber Wellbeing Leader

Kincumber has had an absolutely amazing start to the year. Welcoming our new Year 7 students, our house community has been closer than ever. With immense participation from students from all year levels, it was truly amazing to see everyone supporting and cheering each other on, strengthening our house connection as a whole.

After our striking win at the Swimming carnival and coming second on Athletics day, we are extremely proud and a huge congratulations to everyone who got involved and all the talent we have in our Kincumber house.

The next few terms are going to be busy for Kincumber as the 7 and 12 students begin getting ready to ‘turn back time ‘and perform together on MMADD day with our 70's theme.

We are extremely proud of everyone in Kincumber this term, representing our awesome house with so much pride. We hope to continue the enthusiasm and house spirit for the whole year. Thank you to everyone in Kincumber, you are absolutely smashing it and we are so grateful to be able to represent you all. GO KINCUMBER!!!

Aimee Thornton and Jorja Hickmott – Penola Co-Arts Leaders and Mila Fanjek - Penola Wellbeing Leader

Penola has had a fantastic start to the year, with a new leadership team. Penola’s overall house spirit has been outstanding with involvement with everyone from Year 7 through to Year 12, building connections between the year levels has helped improve our house spirit immensely. Although we did not have the outcome we hoped to have for Athletics and Swimming carnivals, we still won as a house because we all came together to represent Penola. We are so excited for MMADD day and our theme of the 80's, we are very eager to show you that we are the best house!


Olivia O’Rourke – Providence Arts Leader and Monique Parker - Providence Wellbeing Leader

Providence now has a new leadership team, and senior leaders were eager to form close bonds with the incoming students, especially those entering Year 7. Although we didn't have a House win, we had many individual wins that allowed us to come together and celebrate as a family. There was a lot of excitement at the beginning of the year from the year 7 students, and there was a lot of participation at both the Athletics and Swimming carnivals.

Congratulation to Ameila Kennedy, a student in Year 10, for her outstanding achievement at the CGSAV Twilight Competition and the College Swimming carnival becoming the Year 10 champion.

In Term 2, get ready for the best throwback to the 2010s as MMADD DAY soon approaches, start ‘dabbing’ and ‘nae naeing ‘as we get our grove on.


Sophie Mallabone – McCormack Arts Leader and Holly Moore - McCormack Wellbeing Leader

McCormack house has started the year with a bang! With a brand-new House leadership team, the house connections are stronger than ever! Anyone who comes upstairs in the Giovanni building, will see the beaming green walls that have been decorated by house members!

Along with this, it's only April and we are already working hard as a team, visiting Learning Mentor groups, and coming first overall for the Athletics carnival and second place for the Swimming carnival. We are more than excited for MMADD day, and happy to announce that we will be competing with the category of 60s…we can’t wait to show that we are the best house and win the overall house cup!


Jessica Chawla – Solomon Arts Leader and Louise O’Connor - Solomon Wellbeing Leader

Solomon has worked hard to establish relationships with the year 7 students over the past few months in order to foster trust and a supportive environment. We are enthusiastic about MMADD Day and our fantastic theme, the 1990s, and we aim to generate even more passion than we did for the Athletics and Swimming carnivals. We are looking forward to Solomon working together for all the events.

The Red House is us. Go Solomon!