The Member for Penrith Stuart Ayres has congratulated McCarthy Catholic College student Paul Blackman on being selected for a prestigious Premier’s ANZAC Memorial Scholarship.
Paul is one of 16 scholars announced by Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello on 10 April.
The group of Year 10 and 11 students will undertake a pilgrimage to sites of military significance in South East Asia, including Singapore, in an effort to learn more about the Anzac legacy.
“It is wonderful news for Paul and for the McCarthy Catholic College community that someone from our local region has been selected for such an exceptional opportunity,” said Mr Ayres.
“To be selected for a scholarship, students had to show commitment to the study of Australian history, and passion for maintaining the Anzac tradition in their communities.
“Before and after their trip, the scholars will play a leading role in commemorative activities at schools and memorials, as well as submitting an individual project about their experiences.
“I wish Paul all the very best for the South East Asia trip later this year,” Mr Ayres said.
Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello said the scholars’ trip will include visits to sites of military bases and other significant places where Australian soldiers served their country.
“This is a unique opportunity for these NSW students to learn about Australia’s military involvement in the region, not from a text-book but through first-hand experience,” said Mr Dominello.
“In remembrance of fallen Anzacs, the scholars will scatter the ashes of commemorative paper stars inscribed with the names of Australian casualties of the war, originally cast in tribute by visitors to the ANZAC Memorial.
“By seeing the places where Australian servicemen lived and fought, and by forging connections with local communities, this unparalleled real-life learning experience will undoubtedly open their eyes to the realities of war.
“The scholars’ connection with the Anzac legacy will continue when they return, as they share their experiences with their schools and local communities back home,” he said.
“The Anzac spirit is something that binds us all regardless of our age or cultural background. The NSW Government is committed to making Anzac commemorations inclusive of all citizens.”