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Within the Walls of St Andrew’s

July 5, 2017

Our student blogger Hilary Shannon is signing off, as she heads to Spain on exchange.

Her final blog piece is a reflection on the diversity within the walls of St Andrew’s:

One of the most enriching aspects of College life at Andrew’s is its resident population’s ability to constantly surprise you. Someone who might seem like your average city-slicker could be from one of the most remote towns in rural New South Wales. Another who seems as true-blue Aussie as the next bloke could tell you he’d lived in eight countries before the age of ten. And that friend you made in O-Week who seemed like he couldn’t tell his left foot from his right, he could turn out to have topped the state in multiple HSC subjects. We’re an eclectic bunch, that’s for sure!

Within the grand sandstone walls of our historic and beloved home lies individuals from all walks of life. This diversity is one of the most exciting parts of meeting your fresher year for the first time, and also one of the most comforting. It’s great to know that everyone is unique and was accepted based on the qualities only that individual in particular can bring to College. Moreover, if you’re arriving at Drew’s from afar it’s reassuring that there’s likely someone who came from farther, also not knowing a soul but more than ready to embark on a new chapter of life.

The constant surprise of Drew’s diversity really shows itself through individuals who possess vast ranges of talent. A star on the footy field might score multiple tries one day, and steal your heart from the stage at Palladian Drama the next. The top swimmer might turn out to be an avid debater, while also taking charge of Drew’s community service on the side.

And the best part about this range that constantly surprises you? It also constantly encourages you to try new things. If she can double as a tennis-star-cross-violin-player, why can’t I? Why shouldn’t I try out for every sport, or embark on the learn-to-row program? It’s that diversity of talents that encourages us to push our peers, achieve more, and surprise not only each other but more importantly ourselves.

Aside from displaying miscellaneous talents all over College, diversity at Andrew’s most importantly applies in terms of acceptance. Not only do we embrace all lifestyles, backgrounds, cultures and beliefs, we thrive off it. It’s the pivotal building block which keeps our community strong, and our relationships stronger. We are constantly surprising each other with how to best show our welcoming of others and open College doors a little bit wider, a trait at Drew’s that has only been made stronger with various cultural change initiatives.

So whether it be the bloke who speaks six languages and has national titles in chess, the girl who is the lead of the play as well as captain of the hockey team, the boy who came from the middle of nowhere to play trombone, or the individuals who focus solely on supporting their peers; diversity at Drew’s can sneak up on you from every nook and cranny. And as long as we continue to push each other to keep that constant surprise alive, we’ll be constantly satisfied with the result.

  • Hilary Shannon (fr 2015)

Thanks to Hilary for her great contribution to our Blog and for making it what it is today!

Minami Takahashi will be taking over as new student blogger in semester 2.



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