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Monash to be honoured

Dr Mark Johnston One of Scotch College's most illustrious sons, the highly acclaimed World War One commander Sir John Monash, will be honoured by a special lecture to be given in the Sir Robert Blackwood hall at Monash University in July next year.

The lecture, to be delivered by a high profile Australian yet to be named, will not only mark Scotch's sesquicentenary, but also the Centenary of Federation of Australia, the State of Victoria's 100th birthday, and Monash University's 40th anniversary.

One of Australia's greatest men, and arguably its greatest soldier, Sir John Monash was truly a remarkable individual.

Dux of Scotch College in 1881, he was subsequently a graduate of the University of Melbourne in three faculties - Arts, Law and Engineering, as well as being a man of wide-ranging intellect, especially devoted to literature, music, theatre, languages and Jewish scholarship.

Following his brilliant military career, he was the obvious choice in 1920 to lay the foundation stone of the Scotch College Memorial Hall.

He then spent his prodigious energies lavishly on Australian public affairs, putting his immense prestige at the service of many great causes.

A distinguished engineer, he was a pioneer of reinforced concrete construction in Australia and as first Chairman of the State Electricity Commission of Victoria he harnessed Gippsland's huge brown coal deposits which led to a safe and reliable electricity supply becoming available for all Victorians.

The lecture is expected to reflect on some of the contributions made to the Victorian and Australian community by Scotch alumnae in general, but with special reference to the unique record of Sir John Monash.

Further details of the Monash Lecture will be released at a later date.

Footnote: Monash Tour

In April next year, some three months prior to the Monash lecture, another special commemorative event will take place in northern France.

Almost 83 years ago to the day of the costly but wonderfully courageous victory of Australian troops under Sir John Monash's command at the small town of Villers-Bretonneux in the Somme region, a group of Scotch students, teachers and parents will be undertaking a pilgrimage to that town and many other places whose names are etched forever in Australian military history.

This 16-day history excursion to end them all will also be visiting Gallipoli as well as making brief stops in London and Paris.

The tour is being planned by Dr Mark Johnston, Head of History at Scotch, and a well-known military historian, and long-time Scotch history master, Bruce Brown. They can be contacted for further information on (03) 9810 4322.

Updated: Monday 24 June 2013