The mantra that echoes through so many educational institutions is the desire to create a community of those who see themselves as learners for life. In the context of co-curricular, this means the Year 12 student leaver continues to seek out avenues of engagement in the performing arts, sport and the outdoors.

We often applaud the achievements of students at Assemblies, however, a true test of the worth of our programs is found when activities are no longer compulsory and that innate desire to explore new boundaries, to be a learner for life, emerges. There are many recent Grammarians who have maintained that desire to continue to find challenges.

For Hana Basic (2013), winning the National Junior 100-metre title in Sydney last week saw her continuing her love of running. For Sam Hooper (2007), it is a role in a professional production of Cats in Korea which sees him following his passion for the stage that was evidenced in numerous Carey musicals. For Nick Ansell (2012), it is literally kicking goals against visiting internationals as part of the Melbourne Victory soccer team. Whilst all three are on an elite stage, there are many others who continue to play on the stage and on the field as they balance this with tertiary studies or full-time work. The Old Carey Performing Arts Club (OCPAC) is a case in point.

All those who pursue their interests in the music theatre area through the OCPAC are engaged in study or full-time work. In the coming months, the OCPAC will perform a one-week season of Seussical at the Athenaeum Theatre as part of the Comedy Festival. As is the case at school, there are myriad activities on offer beyond school. Our Old Grammarian Football Club allows our students to walk from school into the upper echelons of Victorian football. Both are amateur clubs that advocate the key messages that remain at the heart of the School’s compulsory co-curricular program: find a balance in life, and do not stop seeking out those moments that genuinely challenge. Co-curricular is not compulsory in life post school, but for the individual who is a true life learner it becomes a regular part of their lifestyle and an opportunity that should not be ignored.