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The Word – October 2019

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Newsletters | 31 Oct 2019


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The first half of Semester 2 has been extremely busy with a variety of new College initiatives, student achievements and alumni events.

Scroll down to read more about the launch of the College virtual tour on Open Day, the 2020 Student Leadership Team, the Palladian Cup triumph, the latest sporting results in the Intramural, Rawson and Rosebowl competitons, as well as a recount of the success of Laffo’s Long Lunch and St John’s first Careers Networking Evening.

Also, a special reminder for any alumni located in the Canberra region. The Johnsmen’s Association 2019 Canberra Alumni Dinner is being held on Thursday 31 October. All details and the link to purchase tickets are below.



Students and families can now explore St John’s using the virtual tour on our website.
Many students interested in the College live too far away to visit us in person, so our interactive virtual tour brings the College to them.

Launched at the University of Sydney Open Day on Saturday 31 August, the virtual tour enables students to experience experience an indepth view of locations throughout the College by viewing our 360 images as they view the tour. They can also find out more about College life by watching the various videos embedded in the tour.

If you are curious to see what the College is like now, why not click below to start your own tour.

Student Leadership 2020

The Student Leadership Teams for 2020 have been selected. Elections for the House Executive and Committee were held late last month, whilst interviews were conducted for Pastoral Care Student Team positions.

2020 House Committee

House Executive House Committee
Katie Castle House President
Max Fisher House President
Connor Karozis House Secretary
Finn Tapper House Treasurer
Jack Holdsworth Rawson Secretary
Hamish Horne External Affairs Secretary
Isabella Lau Social Secretary
Xavier Lynch Cultural Secretary
Tahliah Vecchio Rosebowl Secretary
Yvonne Venter Charity Secretary

The 2020 House Executive comprises House Presidents, Katie Castle and Max Fisher, with Connor Karozis elected to the position of Secretary and Finn Tapper to the role of Treasurer. The House Executive work collaboratively with members of the St John’s staff including the Rector, Vice-Rector, Dean and Dean of Students as representatives of the student body.

The House Committee is involved in organising the College cultural, sporting and social activities available to the students as well as any intercollege events. The Committee includes Rawson and Rosebowl Secretaries, Social Secretary, Palladian Secretary and Charity Secretary.

2020 Pastoral Care Student Team

Sub-Deans Resident Assistants (RAs) Corridor Representatives (CRs)
Tommy Arms
Georgia Boonen
Charlotte Beatty
Gianni Cincotta-Lee
George Foley
Cameron Markey
Elena Mitchell
Luke Parker
Anita Pickard
Kate Pickard
John Schnelle
Mira Seshan
Harry Garvey
Emily Papasidero
Gabby Park-McCabe
Jack Schwager
Majella Starr
Patrick Tynan

The 2020 Pastoral Care Student Team will be led by Tommy Arms and Georgia Boonen who were appointed as Sub-Deans. They will then be supported by 10 Resident Assistants (RAs) and 6 Corridor Representatives (CRs). The Pastoral Care Team assist the Student Life team in providing support and guidance to over 250 students.

Johnsmen’s Association
2019 Canberra Alumni Dinner
Do you live in the nation’s capital or surrounding areas?

If you live in or around Canberra, we would like to invite you to join us for dinner and to connect with other alumni and the broader college community.

Alumni, parents, friends and partners are all welcome. Tickets $65pp.

Date: Thursday 31 October
Time: 6:30pm to 10pm
Venue: Commonwealth Club Canberra
Location: 25 Forster Crescent
Yarralumla, ACT 2600
John’s WINS the Palladian Cup

After a year showcasing some of the strongest creative talent John’s has seen in years, we have won the Palladian cup, finishing three points ahead of Women’s (second place) and eleven ahead of St Andrews (third place). John’s students dominated the ten Palladian events, placing in eight, winning three, and placing both first and second in Group Vocal.

The John’s crowd at some of these events outnumbered the total number of attendees from other colleges combined.

This marks a generational shift as John’s becomes an even more creative and vibrant community, supporting its most elite performers while staying inclusive of everyone. It’s been a massive pleasure to have been a part of this community over the past three years and I can’t wait to see what is in store for the creative arts at John’s in the future.

Felix Wallis
Palladian Secretary 2019

Laffo’s Long Lunch

The 11th Annual Laffo’s Long Lunch was held on Friday 13 September at Doltone House. With almost 300 people in attendance, it was another fun and friendly lunch in the spirit of Matt Laffan.

Held on the eve of the Rugby World Cup in Japan the lunch featured rugby greats David Kirk MBE, Simon Poidevin AO and Rod Macqueen AO who discussed some of their career highlights and provided analysis on the upcoming World Cup while Olympic great Marlene Matthews brought along her Olympic Medals and World Titles.

Established by the Johnsmen’s Association, Laffo’s Long Lunch raises funds for the Matt Laffan Scholarship to assist a student with a physical disability to reside at the College. This year’s lunch raised approximately $50,000 which will go towards the Laffan Scholarship Fund at the College and also supports Hearts in Union who provide assistance to people who have suffered a severe spinal or other permanent life altering injury through a freak accident while playing rugby union.

Special thanks to the organising committee, sponsors and partners who worked tirelessly to raise money for this fantastic cause that is a celebration of the great person Matt Laffan was and ensures that Matt’s legacy lives on through the scholarship at the College that bears his name.

Interesting Intramural Competition Results

John’s has had fantastic results in the volleyball part of the Intramural competition this semester with the Men’s team coming 3rd and the Women’s team coming 2nd overall.

The Women’s team had a narrow win (by 1 point) over Women’s in the heats whilst the Men’s team defeated the Darlo Bears by 7.

St John’s is currently sitting in 3rd place in the Men’s Thomas Whalan Cup and 2nd in the Women’s Liane Tooth Cup. Click here to keep up to date with the latest results.

Rawson Round Up: Victory in the Tennis

There has been tough competition within the Rawson sports this semester, however our men have continued to display dedication and perseverance.

Held over three rounds in August, the John’s Rawson team came 4th overall. View detailed results here.

The Rawson Basketball team showed some impressive moves throughout the three rounds of competition and came 4th overall. View detailed results here.

The John’s Rawson team has won 2019 Tennis Competition with amazing defeats of Andrew’s (6-1) in Round 1, Wesley (6-0) in Round 2 and Paul’s (6-0). View detailed results here.

Rosebowl Wrap Up

The John’s Rosebowl teams have already competed in soccer, basketball and tennis in the first half of Semester 2. We are heading to the pointy end of the competition with it finishing with athletics scheduled in late October.

The John’s Rosebowl team had a very successful soccer campaign in August coming equal 2nd. View detailed results here.

The basketball competition was spread across five rounds. The John’s Rosebowl team had a convincing win over Women’s in Round 5 and came 4th overall. View detailed results here.

The Rosebowl tennis competition was held in September over five rounds. The John’s team crushingly defeated Sancta in Round 3 and came 4th overall. View detailed results here.

Careers Networking Evening

A Careers Networking Evening for St John’s students was held at College on Wednesday 28 August.

Alumni, current parents and friends of the College from various stages of their professional careers generously volunteered their time and expertise to meet approximately seventy students in the second year or above of their degree. A diverse range of professions, from Pharmacy to Finance, Architecture to Agriculture, Marketing to Medicine was represented.

During the evening students were able to discuss a range of topics with their chosen advisers, such as the best way to enter a profession, what the work encompassed, professional development etc. Students and advisers were encouraged to stay in touch with each other following the event.

Feedback from advisers and students was very positive and included requests and suggestions for continuing the program. So, in 2020 the College will build on the success of this first careers evening by hosting similar Careers Networking events. These may take a different format, possibly including more intimate gatherings based on professional areas and a more social aspect such as dinner.

Watch out for an invitation to take part in Semester 1 2020 event which will be sent out prior to the end of 2019 College year.

Do you have news to share?

The college loves to hear what the alumni are up to these days, so if you have any news please email it through to

If you are organising a reunion make sure to contact the College to let us know.


Our mailing address is:

St John’s College within the University of Sydney

10 Missenden Road, Camperdown
Sydney, NSW, 2050

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