From the Director of Planning and Organisation, Career Practitioner & VET Coordinator

Why are St Catherine’s girls going to be our future leaders? 

Why do our girls value and absorb Community Service initiatives?

Why does a St Catherine’s girl always look for what is next?

Why are they engaged in opportunities for teamwork?

In a recent article I read, there was reference to the book, The ideal team player, by Patrick Lencioni. He describes the ideal team player as someone who demonstrates the three virtues of humility, hunger and people smarts. With the power being in the combination of all three virtues working together.

One only needs to visit St Catherine’s School to see the interactions and involvement of the girls with one another, and staff, to see these three virtues in action. The recipe for future leaders is to be great team players. The busy young women at St Catherine’s are engaged in a range of music, sport, academic, diversity and community groups.

They work together with common goals aimed at participation, improving, and teamwork. They are motivated and hard working. They look to learn more and do more. They are ambitious, generous and encouraging.

Visiting the School last Friday after school, you would have been able to feel the atmosphere as the Year 12 students ran an incredible afternoon of activities for all girls in the Senior School. Girls in Years 7 to 12 joined forces and began by designing headbands to distinguish their teams. Then on to activates, such as egg and spoon races, Pictionary, hoola hooping etc. The engaging afternoon of fun, finished with a BBQ, fairy floss and laughter.


Why all this fun?  Our way! This is how the St Catherine’s student leaders develop a sense of community and engagement with girls in all year groups. The friendships developed vertically within the School foster a nurturing, encouraging and supportive community. The other important point of this afternoon was that our students and families used this afternoon to raise awareness and funds for the White Ribbon campaign.

St Catherine’s girls are heavily involved in various Community Service initiatives. This year a number of valuable participants have completed initiatives to support the Red Cross Door knock, Friday night school, Starlight Foundation, Red Shield Appeal and MND to name a few. Years 9 and 10 girls are all focused on completing their Leadership Diploma, which includes servicing a community initiative.

Recent visits to Australian Catholic University (ACU) and Latrobe University Career Practitioner days has only further enhanced the notion that Leadership and Community Service are integral parts of a young person’s development that we should all be nurturing. Both of these Institutes encourage early applications for programs, as they are looking at a combination of factors, not just the ATAR score, as a determinant of future leaders.

With the nature of work changing, our role is to ensure the girls of St Catherine’s have many opportunities to engage, learn, lead, play and give.

Mrs Pauline Van der Poel, Director of Planning and Organisation, Career Practitioner & VET Coordinator