Brandsma House Sleep Out

October 12th, 2018

On Friday 14 September the Brandsma House relaunched its Sleep Out activity that was started by Peter Ciardulli six years ago. This year’s focus was to support the House’s charity Avalon that looks to assist the homeless and the disadvantaged in our community.

During the week leading up to the night, the Brandsma students and their families scoured their homes for men’s clothing that could be donated. The clothing is given to the homeless via the Avalon van that travels out to the streets. In addition to this, students have been donating coins throughout the term.

The Sleep Out relaunching was driven by the Brandsma Captain Sam Ellingsen who worked with the College leaders to promote a simple but effective action that would enable our community to improve their awareness of the plight of homelessness. By no means did the boys think this action could replicate the experience of homelessness but it provided a glimpse into a world that is different to our boy’s lives.

The small but passionate crew of students was mainly Brandsma but there was a mixture of other students that jumped on board. The Chapel’s courtyard acted as the base area for the boys to sleep. The weather was thankfully mild and sleep slowly occurred however, the boys appreciated the morning sunlight as a sign that things were coming to a finish. Parents, David Mariniello and Jennitta Loman, graciously offered to assist with a 6:30am breakfast on Saturday morning. Eggs and bacon were donated kindly by Br Sean, the Macrokanis family, the Phelan family and the Shanley family. The bread rolls were donated generously by Breadstreet in Mont Albert via the McIntyre family. A special mention to Ms Dekazos, Mr Buchan, and Mr Buchan’s dog Scout, who slept out for the night and assisted with supervision.

As always, it is a humbling to share these experiences with our students and hopefully this is the beginning of an annual event that will grow and build a meaningful activity for the Whitefriars community.

2017 College Dux addresses High Achievers

October 12th, 2018

This term, 2017 College Dux Thomas Cantwell addressed students and staff at the Semester 1 Higher Achievers Morning Tea. The function is held each semester to recognise the top ten students in each year level for their academic excellence. The students were also recognised at the whole school College Assembly.

The following exerts are from Thomas’ speech that highlight four lessons learnt during his time at Whitefriars College.


Individual learning
“We must account for our uniqueness and individuality when we journey through education, as each of us finds success through different means. We have to figure out what our own specific learning style is – and use it fearlessly. The fact that you are here today, demonstrates that you have found a way of learning that suits you. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t grow, develop and evolve as independent learners.”

“My older sister Felicity, is a much more traditional and careful soul than myself. Throughout Year 12, she rarely went to parties. She cautioned me during my own Year 12 saying that I needed to push all my focus on my education and rescind my social life. Felicity is an immensely intelligent individual, who was very successful in school, but she didn’t understand my need for balance. Finding the right balance is one of the most complex tasks you will grapple with and no one can tell you what is right for you. However, I would suggest that you resist the urge to party every Friday and Saturday but only as much as I would oppose the inclination to lock yourself in the study every time an opportunity for social interaction arises. The right balance exits somewhere between these two extremities. I cannot emphasise the importance of strong and healthy relationships enough. The friendships that you build in school are crucial. Ensure you are loyal to your friends even when you’re striving for academic success.”

“Some of you may engage in the “us versus them” mentality when it comes to students and teachers. However, the fact you are here today, may mean you have not been drawn into that toxic dichotomy, and on the contrary, have rightly begun to see that teachers are the most valuable asset you have. Indeed, my interaction with many teachers was argumentative and confrontational within my first years at Whitefriars. However, during VCE, after I had matured and developed as a person, I began to build enriching relationships with many of my teachers. Mr Vujcich, Ms Fitzsimons, Ms Kay-Taylor and Miss Cape, just to name a few. As such, my advice would be to act as respectfully and thoughtfully as possible towards your teachers in early and middle school, to let those strong relationships manifest themselves later on in your Whitefriars journey. Furthermore, I would urge you to see your teachers as tools to help you navigate the path towards personal success, even though I understand that such a philosophy can be hard to
personify at times.“

Hard work
“Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard; this idea is so powerful because it challenges all of us. It is a reminder that even if you are highly talented, you can be surpassed by the ‘hard workers’ if your work ethic wavers. For those who work hard to succeed; it is a reminder that devotion and perseverance are fruitful.”

What is success?
“Is success reflected in the score you receive at the end of the year? Maybe it is in part, but it may be a little bit more nuanced than that. Perhaps it is about growing as a whole person. To paraphrase Maester Aemon in Game of Thrones, our time at Whitefriars should be about letting the boys die and initiating the birth of a man. We should use our time at Whitefriars to grow as men who are honourable and loving. We should use this time to build our moral compass and understand right from wrong. To use the Whitefriars words, which are expressed so frequently because they are so incredibly relevant, we should learn to become ‘gentle men’. Perhaps this simultaneous learning; academic and moral, is true success and something I hope you can all embody.”

Thomas Cantwell, Class of 2017, Dux

Student Leadership 2019

October 12th, 2018

Congratulations to the following students on their appointments.

We wish these young men every blessing as they take up their leadership roles next year. Special thanks and words of appreciation are extended to all the applicants for their participation in the Leadership Workshops, the Leadership Camp and for the speeches that the final group of ten gave last week.

Other student leadership appointments will be finalised in the first few weeks of Term 4.

2018 Mount Carmel Day Celebrations

October 12th, 2018

Another wonderful ‘Our Lady of Mount Carmel Feast Day’ was celebrated on Friday 14 September, in glorious weather.


The day began with the celebration of the Masses by Fr Paul Cahill and Fr Paul Sireh, who spoke very meaningfully to our community with their inspirational expression of our Faith, our Carmelite ethos and the importance of our responsibility to unconditionally care for others – through the life and example of Mary.


Loving God, as we celebrate this special day in honour of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, we open the doors of our hearts and our minds.
Empower us to see you in the faces of our brothers and sisters, here at Whitefriars, in our College community and in the people of Timor-Leste.
May Mary, the mother of your Son, help us to renew the world in your ways of peace and justice. We ask this prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen

Walkathon on OLMC Day

Whitefriars’ Walk for Timor-Leste 2018 generated over $26,000.00. What this means in practical terms for the people of Timor-Leste is a means to open opportunities in their futures. A large portion of the money raised this year will help fund the Carmelite Scholarship Program. This program enables Timorese males and females a means to an education they would not otherwise receive, due to the poverty of their families. Right now, there are twenty-six people benefiting from the program. Of these, fourteen are undertaking undergraduate degrees at university and the remaining twelve are completing high school. The students at university are enrolled in the following degrees:

Four studying to be teachers; three working toward a degree in IT; one each studying in the following areas. Nursing; Public Health; Tour and Travel Management; Agro-Business; Economics; Mechanical Engineering; and Petroleum Industries.

In a country, where only about 36% of the population gets any education, a university education allows these students to make major changes in Timor-Leste.

Other money from the walk will sponsor programs such as Days for Girls and to supply educational materials for the Student-Staff Immersion Program.

We asked our students to get five $5.00 donations. Thanks to the students who did so and those who went beyond the $25.00. As an educational instruction, many of our students accept education as a given. Parents and others make sure bills are paid so that our students can enjoy the benefits from the learning. Few, probably, reflect on what it would be like not to have an education. Unfortunately, the reverse is true in Timor-Leste. Most children do not receive any education. One of the lessons learned from our students who have gone to Timor-Leste with the Immersion Program in June is the energy and enthusiasm the Timorese students put into learning. The Timorese see education as a means to improve. These students view education not as a given, but a privilege. Our returning students often reflect on how lucky we are to live in Australia and the education we receive.

See the IMAGE GALLERY here

Well done to our ACC Cross Country Team

September 13th, 2018

Congratulations to our ACC Cross Country team on their performance at the ACC Cross Country Championships at Bundoora Park yesterday.

After two terms of work (with Wednesday and Friday 7am sessions and weekend carnivals), it was great to see so many personal best results from our athletes on the day.

The day was successful for the boys being in third place for the entire day but just being pipped in the last race by the team that was below us consequently moving us in to fourth place.

A big thank-you must go to the following people:

Congratulations to the following students achieving Top 20 places:

Congratulations also to our U/13 Team on their 3rd place finish and U/14 Team on their 2nd place finish.


Australian Paralympian Jaryd Clifford visits Cross Country Team

September 3rd, 2018

We were very fortunate to have Australian Paralympian Jaryd Clifford attend our Cross Country session last week, where he both trained with the boys and spoke to them about his experiences of being a professional athlete.

Jaryd is not only a world champion in his T13 (sight impaired) classification; he made history at the IAAF World U20 Championships in Tampere, Finland where he became the first Australian Paralympian to compete at an ‘ablebodied’ world championships (after winning the national able-bodied championship!).

Click here for a story on his career to date

National Tree Planting Day

September 3rd, 2018

Whitefriars College celebrated National Tree Planting on the 3 August. Thank you to Nicholas Smith (Middle School Captain) and Joel Monteiro (Senior School Captain) for organising the leadership group to participate. A big thank you to Mrs Ciavarella, Mrs Alexander, Anton Porto (8) and Hamish Harrison (8) for giving up their lunchtime to plant. Poa Lab grasses were planted at the front entrance, sourced from the not-for-profit nursery at Friends of Warrandyte National Park.

Read a Million Words House Challenge Celebration 2018

September 3rd, 2018

The Shortis Library has hosted a number of activities during Book Week promoting reading and writing, including engaging workshops by visiting author Jack Heath, a Manga meetup, quizzes on this year’s theme of ‘Find Your Treasure’, Where’s Wally, Wookie and Stig competitions and the House Reading Challenge celebration.

The Read a Million Words House Challenge concluded on 10 August and a celebration was held for all the participants who collectively read 28,124,421 words over a three-month period. Achieving the most words read overall, the winning house was Lisieux (9,624,153) followed by Mantua (5,139,643) and Soreth (3,055,220) in 2nd and 3rd place.

Congratulations on the individual achievements:

Most words read in each year level awards in order:


Regional Chess Championships

September 3rd, 2018

On Monday 6 August we had our first major chess tournament for 2018. The boys from Years 7 to 12 participated in the Regional Chess Tournament at Marcellin College and competed against students from a number of different schools in the region. We are  pleased to announce that the boys did extremely well.

It was the first chess competition for many of the team members, and the boys played with great spirit and enthusiasm. Whitefriars entered two teams this year with all the boys experiencing some success and learned much from the seven games they each played.
There were over 20 teams competing at the tournament, with each team having between 5 to 10 members. At the start of the day, we were informed that the top seven teams would go to the State Championships.

Our WFC Team 1 finished fourth overall and has now been invited to take part in state finals; the boys are very excited.

A special note of thanks must go to Ms Rhonda Powling (Chess Manager) and Mr William Wood for their extensive preparation of the boys throughout 2018. A special thanks to Dr Goodall for driving the team bus to get us there and back.

Whitefriars Team 1 Whitefriars Team 2
Jayden Bardrick, Year 10 Marcus Dunlop, Year 10
Jacob Sanderson, Year 10 Hayden Menzies, Year 9
Ethan Hooi, Year 8 Daniel Almaraz, Year 11
Fynn Jones, Year 9 Lucas D’Costa, Year 9
Alex Long, Year 12 Paddy Sanderson, Year 9

“The Marcellin Chess Tournament was a challenge for all our students, and everyone from Whitefriars put in their best efforts, with Team 1 managing to secure a place in the State Finals this year. All the boys gave it their best and had a good time.” Fynn Jones, Year 9

The Blessing and Official Opening of the Science and Technology Building

September 3rd, 2018

The Blessing and Official Opening of the magnificent new facility, the Science and Technology Centre, took place on Wednesday 1 August. Those in attendance included: Very Rev Paul Cahill O.Carm, Hon Kevin Andrews – Federal Member for Menzies, Mr Peter Duffy – Chairman of Whitefriars Inc. College Board, Mr John Finn: Whitefriars College Principal 2013 – 2017, representatives from Williams Ross Architects, Lloyd Group Construction Company and Prowse Quantity Surveyors, Fr Paul Sireh – College Chaplain, Mr Michael Mimmo – Whitefriars Parents Association President, Mr Phil Thomson – Whitefriars Old Collegians President, Ms Vicky Myers – Secondary Principals Consultant (CEM Eastern Region), principals of local Catholic primary schools, College Board members, Old Collegians, staff and students.

We all are forever grateful to the Whitefriars planning team who worked on this project, for their collegiality, professionalism, generosity of spirit and for being the imperative, decisive link for all parties involved in this building program. Thank you to Fr Paul Cahill O. Carm, for presiding over the Blessing Rite, performing the Official Opening and for his inspiring and reassuring words on the day. Fr Paul’s message focused on the Carmelite charism, the legacy of the Carmelites in providing Catholic education for our community and on the richness and meaningfulness of the Spirit and guiding tenets of Prayer, Community and Action in underpinning all our deliberations and service. Thank you to the College Board Chairman, Mr Peter Duffy, for his kind words in acknowledging the influence and dedication of the Carmelites to the education of young men at Whitefriars for almost sixty years, and on behalf of all of us, for acknowledging the impressive team effort for this project over the past three years. Thank you to Mr Mark Ashmore, the College Captains and the Science Captain, John Korasidis, for their words of appreciation. Thank you to Mr John Abrahams, Ms Gabrielle Dalton and Ms Keely Scicluna who played key roles in wonderfully organising the proceedings for the special day.

On behalf of the Whitefriars community, we sincerely extend our gratitude to a number of groups and people for their significant roles in delivering this outstanding facility:

The very dream of new facilities, of refurbishment have inspired our community, for the opportunities this will provide, in such effective ways in meeting local and global standards of education, global citizenship and social innovation. Our objective encompasses the legacy and vision of the Carmelite ethos in providing boys with every opportunity to make the most of what education has to offer, to strive to be their very best and be inspired to serve others. Almae In Fide Parentis.


To see all of the images from the event, please CLICK HERE

House Swimming Carnival

August 6th, 2018

Thank you to all staff and students (especially our College Sport Captains) for your amazing assistance and participation on the day. The collegial support and
spirit was fantastic and something that our college consistently does extremely well.

We wish to congratulate:

1st 2nd 3rd
Junior Evan Chee Patrick Zwarts Harry Rooney
Senior Sean Blackley Dylan Knight Liam Donohue

The Fastest Friar Results were:

Junior Fastest Friar

Place Time Name House
1 27.00 Evan Chee Soreth
2 28.53 Patrick Zwarts Lisieux
3 28.91 Harry Rooney Trinity
4 29.84 Luke Cormack Stein
5 30.04 Riley O’Connell Stein
6 30.46 Ryan Dickenson Mantua
7 30.51 Connor Ward Stein
8 31.30 Jonas Morrison Soreth

Noel Kierce Senior Fastest Friar

Place Time Name House
1 25.57 Sean Blackley Mantua
2 25.63 Dylan Knight Soreth
3 26.19 Liam Donohue Corsini
4 26.44 Marcus Agnos Mantua
5 26.45 Justin Botha Stein
6 26.93 Matthew Farley Stein
7 27.04 Jack Gurrie Soreth
8 27.28 William Campbell Soreth

Carnival Placings


Place House Points
1 Stein 885
2 Soreth 754
3 Trinity 717
4 Corsini 696
5 Avila 644
6 Lisieux 635
7 Brandsma 632
8 Mantua 537


Place House Points
1 Stein 665
2 Soreth 625
3 Avila 601
4 Brandsma 537
5 Corsini 537
6 Mantua 536
7 Lisieux 489
8 Trinity 443


Days for Girls – Charity Update

August 6th, 2018

Another example of Faith in Action Days for Girls increases access to menstrual care and education by developing global partnerships, cultivating social enterprises, mobilizing volunteers, and innovating sustainable solutions that shatter stigmas and limitations for women and girls. Together, we’re creating a world with dignity, health, and opportunity for all.

Our movement has reached more than one million girls — and counting! With your help, we can reach Every Girl. Everywhere. Period. Whitefriars College is the first boys school in Australia to take up the championship of this women’s health initiative, and we would love for all of our College community, parents, staff and students to continue to be on board. The benefits to the girls and women receiving the Days for Girls kits are immediate – some aspects of their lives change that day. We hope that our involvement in this cause will also benefit our students, developing their positive attitudes to women and growing their understandings around gender equality.

In 2017, members of the Timor-Leste Immersion program took 280 Days for Girls kits for distribution, with a particular focus on the communities of Zumalai and Beilaco. This has helped to eliminate some of the barriers that women face in participating in work and education. In 2018, we delivered 242 Days for Girls Kits.

We are holding a series of information evenings and practical workshops to get a wider section of our College community involved in the Days for Girls program. Details for the next session are below, please join us.

Practical Preparation and Packing Workshop
Sunday 12 August 10.30am – 2.30pm

The afternoon is designed to be a hands-on workshop, enabling you to contribute directly to the creation of the kits – no sewing experience
necessary! It includes a sausage sizzle to be provided by members of the Templestowe Rotary Club.Function Room, Butler Building, Whitefriars College



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