School Captain's Report September 2000
The year's greatest evaluation of achievement draws nigh. There was a sign in the Prefect's Room recently, which had been regularly catching my eye. It was about an upcoming meeting, and one item on the agenda was the selection of prefects for 2001. This automatically made me think about how far the year had progressed, and where all the time had gone.
It is an interesting human trait to worry so much about time, despite having no control over it. As the old adage tells us 'Time waits for no man', and it is probably more prudent to consider effective time management rather than time itself.
After considering time management, it is inevitable that a personal assessment of the year's achievements will start to develop in most minds, and I strongly believe that a successful year for a Scotch student can often be evaluated in three distinct areas.
The first is the completion of all duties and responsibilities to the highest possible standard. Each student has different priorities and goals. Responsibilities may be personal or directed towards others. For example a student has a responsibility to himself to undertake diligent academic study and to take part in a programme of other activities such as sport, music, drama or service. I believe that a student also has a social responsibility toward family and friends, and school leaders have a moral responsibility to the school. Wherever these various responsibilities lie, and whichever are the most important, now is the time that all are coming to an end and students must start ensuring that they have achieved all of their goals.
The second area of success is probably the most difficult to put into words, but it relates to a personal "effort" beyond what is normally expected. Students often have some very ambitious and admirable hopes for the year, and it will be a great shame if these hopes remain simply unfulfilled dreams.
Every student has the capacity to add a unique, personal touch to some area in the school. Although various areas often receive higher accolades and publicity than others, nobody should feel discouraged or degraded by achieving something beyond average. It is often surprising exactly how many people within a school learn of and appreciate such an effort, and the creation of feelings of self-esteem and worth in a student are often enormous when the year concludes.
The final area is enjoyment of life at Scotch. I have always had the utmost respect for those who can claim to have succeeded in the above two areas and also enjoyed their life at school. Arriving at Scotch College in the morning should never be a chore for students. If so, there must be something amiss in their personal programme. Year 12 students can now see through the smoke of the stressful VCE academic program, and as the haze clears they are also realising exactly how much this college has meant to them over the years. It certainly adds incalculable value to the emotional final weeks at school, if enjoyment has been experienced in daily life at Scotch.
Time may wait for no man, and the result of time is a very fickle uncertainty. The best way to overcome this is to ensure that all areas which contribute to achievement are now being addressed and fulfilled.
Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that's the stuff life is made of Benjamin Franklin, 1746