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Valete 2017 – A special evening

On the evening of Saturday, 28th October the Aquinas College community came together for a very special and moving night to farewell 13 students who are completing their respective degrees this year and embarking on a new and exciting chapter in their lives. On behalf of the Valetants, Lisa Puglisi and Nicholas Hamilton gave the following speech.

“We stand before you tonight to say thank you and acknowledge all the people that have made our time at Aquinas memorable. Some of us have been at Aquinas for three years and some of us were lucky enough to make it four.  During this time Aquinas has become a large part of who we are, we have made lifelong friends, amazing memories and we have been lucky enough to call Aquinas home. Throughout this time, we have had the love and support from so many people and without you all we would not be standing before you tonight.

First of all, we would like to say thank you to the MC’s of tonight, Andrea and Fletcher as it takes a lot of courage to stand in front of a crowd and host for a whole evening but you have both done a terrific job. We would also like to thank everyone for celebrating this special evening with us and I think it is easy to say that the night has been spectacular.

A big thank you to the servers and kitchen staff for the beautiful meal this evening, but not only that we would like to say a massive thank you to Mark and the kitchen staff for all your contribution throughout the last few years. Thanks for providing us all with countless meals, friendly faces and endless late teas.

We would also like to say a massive thank you to the College staff Jo, Stacey, Brother Paul, Carolyn, Kerry, Michael, Sally, Kelly, Sarah, Brother Jordan, Sister Margaret and a big shout out to Dave and Mark. Thank you so much for keeping these grounds immaculate and attending to our countless maintenance requests from leaking taps to broken doors. You have all made our time here so much better, helping us grow through our university journey.  Also, a special mention to the College board and thank you to David and Lisa Brookes and Peter and Margaret Macks, for attending this evening and presenting the Valedictory awards to Amy Anderson, Eliza Boulton, Nicholas Dawes, Olivia Fabris, Sophie Fox, Eliza Fromm, Nicholas Hamilton, Hannah Kroemer, Emma Lee, Joshua Morrow, Sean Munro, Sarah Parnanzini, Genna Rahman and Lisa Puglisi.

Thank you so much to all the House Coordinators. You’ve given up a lot of time for our college and put in a lot of work behind the scenes. You have always been there for us in a time of need. You’ve been there for the late lockouts, if we needed a friend to talk to or if we ever needed help. Your work does not go unnoticed and we are all so grateful for your efforts. I know I can speak on behalf of the College when I say we are so proud of the work you have put in to make Aquinas the amazing place it is.

To Jayce, Lily and Student Club. You have put in so much time and effort organizing, setting up, planning, serving and providing a fun and exciting environment for the students at Aquinas College. Student Club is not always as pretty as it seems, but you all have contributed immensely to the College and made our last year at Aquinas one to remember.  And now to our fellow students, whether you were a coach, avid HTC supporter, athlete, fire warden, Lawrie Smart captain, Administration Officer, Senior Academic Tutor, Outreach Coordinator, Tutor, Committee member or just a friendly face around College, you have all made our time at Aquinas something special and it makes it so much harder to leave.

To our parents, family members and friends. Thank you all for travelling great distances to be here with us tonight. We are so grateful that we are able to share a part of Aquinas with you. We’d like to thank you for supporting us through this journey. No matter the distance, you have had our backs in times of need, whether we needed financial help, someone to talk to on a bad day, or someone to talk to on a good day, you’ve all enabled us to be the best versions of ourselves and you have given us the opportunity of a lifetime. We are very privileged to have the support and love that you instill upon us every day. Thanks again for all that you have done.

Last but definitely not least thank you to Mardi Isbel and her committee for putting on such a spectacular evening. Mardi has gone above and beyond as it has taken months of planning, liaising with staff, students, Kitchen staff, parents, printing companies and a lot of time folding napkins.  If you look around the room you can see all the hard work and time Mardi and her committee has put in to make this Valete night one to remember.

We could never thank you all enough for our time here at Aquinas College and for allowing us to be a part of such a beautiful community. We may not be here next year but no matter where we go, well always find our way back home.”

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