High achieving academic and extracurricular students were recognised and the graduating Class of 2017 were farewelled at Speech Day on Wednesday 15 November. The occasion also provided an opportunity to hear from the School’s leaders and guest speaker BGS Old Boy Major General John Pearn ’57.
Once again live-streamed to take the event to the broader BGS community, Headmaster Anthony Micallef used his Speech Day address to reflect on a year of achievement across all domains of the School. He wished the graduating class luck and said they would be remembered as an “active and industrious year group” and praised the student leaders for their guidance.
Board of Trustees Chairman Howard Stack reflected on the past and looked to the future in his address. “We stand on the cusp of our 150th year,” he said. “The writing of the history of those 150 years, to be published late next year, has caused us to reflect a lot upon where we have come from, where we are, and where we want to be within the next 20 years. Our plans are ambitious.”
Mr Stack said he was proud of the Class of 2017 and encouraged them to maintain their connection with BGS as Old Boys. “The BGS community salutes you as you go out to take your next steps and make your way in life,” he said. “Do not forget where you came from. Come back when you are ready.”
The guest speaker, BGS Old Boy Major General John Pearn ’57, gave an inspirational address. Drawing on more than five decades of work as an academic, paediatrician and physician, he focused on the theme of giving back to bring personal fulfilment.
Outgoing School Captain Josh Grice, who was awarded Dux, spoke with poise and precision, assessing the achievements of 2017 in terms of his overall theme of community. “Our goal was for each student to connect to the fabric of who we are, to commit to advancing our collective interests, and to strive to contribute to both our School and to the wider community,” he said. “I have felt proud and honoured then, to have watched students at all stages of their journey work to connect, commit, and contribute in powerful and generous ways this year.”
Josh’s address, his final speech in front of the entire school community, closed by looking to the future. “2018 will be an enormously significant year for our school as it celebrates its 150th anniversary, and for the boys, staff and families who have been part of its rich story,” he said. “We count ourselves as incredibly blessed to have been a part of that fabric.”