Ian Whitehead – Why I loved St Patrick’s

June 14, 2016

Old Boy Ian Whitehead (SPC 1973) visited- St Patrick’s College recently and- has shared his feelings about the positive impact that the school has played in his life.

Ian- toured the current school buildings and grounds and also brought along- family medals, which were awarded to his father while he was- a St Patrick’s College student back in the 1920s.

Ian has kindly offered to lend his father’s- awards -“ one for first prize in music- in 1924 -“ to the College on semi-permanent loan and we sincerely thank him for this kind gesture.

Ian also wrote to the College after his recent visit.

-It was a very emotional visit for me and words cannot express my- gratitude for allowing me to visit the school that changed my life, see photos of my father and uncles and see the amazing expansion of the school.–

Ian also took the time to write- about his time at St Patrick’s and welcomed the opportunity for it to be shared with the wider Old Collegian- community.

Five reasons why I love St Pat’s

1 – It changed my life. I failed Year 12 at one of the top private schools in the state. I was in the bottom 7% and was told that I would not be successful in any subject or pass English. In one year at St Pat’s I won the Purton Oratory Debating and got the highest mark in English Literature.

2 – Caring,- passionate teachers set me up for my career. I have been a teacher for over 20 years and ironically was offered to teach back at my Melbourne School where I had failed. I breezed through first year university after working hard in Year 12. I have taught in Sweden and now am at RMIT.

3 – Sense of history. My father and uncles were prominent academic and sporting students in the 1920s. The solid feeling and respect for the past is echoed in the displays at the College, school Annuals available going back to 1895 and the way past students, like myself, are welcomed back to visit like a homecoming.

4 — Quality of Students and families. I still have many true friends today that I made in 1973 which bears testament to the- quality of students and families.

5– – Conquered past issues to display true Christian values. There’s a great truism of life that you can’t help what happens to you but you can help how you deal with it. St Pat’s has been an exceptional leader in honesty, strength and morals. This has truly inspired me.

Old Boys are more than welcome to come and visit the College. To book in a tour, please feel free to call Alumni and Foundation Officer Lorrie Liston on (03) 5322 4442 or email lliston@stpats.vic.edu.au