We are emerging now however, ruffling our feathers after more than 100 days of being couped up and we are ready to fly.
There are two special sayings that I have carried with me through my six years at Brigidine. The first being that ‘Girls can do anything but Brigo girls can do everything’. I couldn’t contain my excitement when I found out all the possibilities at Brigidine, signing up in my first week in Year 7 to almost every sport, club and cocurricular activity I could. I quickly discovered the limitations of a 24-hour day, having to cut Drama club, Textiles club, Taekwondo, Yoga, Hip hop and Tap from my schedule. But I have been so blessed to have done so much throughout the years, from Debating to Sports Aerobics and making some of my most special memories and friends along the way.
The second saying is the school motto, Fortiter et Suaviter or ‘Strength and Gentleness’. If you can take anything from Brigidine let it be that. Learning to lead a life with strength and gentleness has been one of the most valuable things I have learnt at Brigidine, something that I will carry through life with me forever.
One moment this year that truly captured this idea was the Senior Consent Forum, one of the moments that I have felt the proudest to be a Brigidine student. Senior students came together to address the issue of respect and consent which this year, more than ever has become a pertinent issue, and it was electrifying. The theatre was filled with an atmosphere of support and solidarity, as the Senior students were both strong and gentle. Letting their voices be heard, but also amplifying and supporting the voices of others. I hope you can all continue that passion and energy throughout the rest of the school and throughout all of your lives. Never stop fighting for what you believe is right and let your voice be heard.
At the start of our journey as senior students, Mrs Lovett introduced to us an African Philosophy, Ubuntu. It translates roughly to “humanity” and is based on the essence of “I am because we are”, that a person’s existence is rested in the humanity of those around them. I stand here, after six years with these people, a testament to that statement. We are stronger and more resilient because we have known Charlotte Price, Ruby Szelid and Emma Dewar. We are kinder because of Skye McCully and Mia Ferguson. We are more inquisitive because of Sophie Orellana, more accepting because of Lillian Jenkins, Tash Kilshaw and Sophie Watts. We are more diligent, inspired by Abbie Gates, Courtney Wilkinson, Tara Thai, Georgia Bonadio and Julia Manias. We are more talented because we know Charlotte Thomson, Natalie Theodore, Isabel Hopping, Maddie Xegas and Jess Wilson, more generous thanks to Molly Jarman. We laugh harder thanks to Jenny Cummins and we are more genuine thanks to Jaanvi Khandhar, Cam Pryor and Taylor Elliott.
I am a better person because I have known all of you and the friends that I have made here are the most wonderful people I know, and I will cherish them forever. Thank you all for walking beside me for so many years, each one of you has inspired me to be better and try harder. 6 years ago, I walked into those gates a nervous twelve-year-old with her dress grazing her socks, unsure of who I was or what I wanted to achieve. I walk out these gates a changed person, more sure of myself and of the way I want to change the world, a woman who understands what it means to be a good person because I have been surrounded by them every day and I cannot thank you enough for that. Our roots will always lie here, in soil of the Brigidine land, where we have learnt to flourish every day. But now it is time for us to spread out branches far and wide across the world, and I know wherever the 2021 graduates wander the world will be made a better place.
College Captain 2021