Creston College News & Events page 2


Did you ever think about the fact that only humans have hands? It may seem obvious, but it’s not. In the world of nature, we humans are uniquely vulnerable: wings, paws or flippers get you around a lot faster and farther; fur and feathers provide protection from the elements; refined senses, instincts, and defense mechanisms automatically kick in to ward off dangers and detect opportunities for growth.
But our vulnerability is at the same time our strength.
With our hands, we can build wings to fly.
With our hands, we can design our own habitat and weave our own wear.
With our hands, we can provide care, establish relations, protect ourselves and others.
Our hands are instruments open to infinite possibilities.

With our hands, we humanize the world.
Our basic needs become arts and professions: Medicine, Gastronomy, Architecture, Fashion, Communication, Education, Domestic Work, Design;
Our interdependence creates employment opportunities: Commerce, Health Care, Politics, Law, Economy, Business, International Affairs;
Our openness to infinite possibilities drives work forward: Technology, Entertainment, Innovation, Research, Creativity.
With our hands, we work. But have we always worked in the same way? Today the world of work is undergoing arguably the most drastic transformation since the Industrial Revolution in the 19th Century. Information technology, shifting social demographics and globalization are some of the factors that are shaping the ambiguous future of work, in which one-track careers are being replaced by multi-faceted professional trajectories, and personal capacities and aptitudes such as critical thinking, resilience, problem-solving and decision-making are increasingly valued over technical know-how.
The world of work in the 21st century is full of challenges: vast geographic and social inequalities, corruption, inefficient structures, forced labor, unrecognized and uncompensated work, human trafficking, unregulated activity in emerging sectors and high levels of youth unemployment…
So let’s get down to business. The 21st century professional is serious, dedicated, diligent, creative, transformational, focused, capable of persevering in an integrated cognitive and physical effort. What kind of personal development does a professional in today’s workforce need in order to convert needs into opportunities and vulnerabilities into strengths? How does one´s profession become an authentic service to society and the individuals who surround us? What can your hands do that a robotic arm cannot? What can you contribute that lies beyond the scope of artificial intelligence? The challenges are many… but our hands are open to infinite possibilities

• Gia-Yen Luong: Creston Alumna wins a Rhodes Scholarship

5:30 pm, Friday 26 October.  It was hectic at the college – preparations for the End of Semester Formal Dinner…when we received this jubilant SMS from ‘Nobie’ (that’s Gia-Yen’s nickname at Creston)…”I won!!!”

Gia-Yen Loung was a resident at Creston College from 2012 until she finished her Law/Science degree in 2016.  At the ice-breaker activity of 0-week 2012, she introduced herself saying. “I’m Gia-Yen, from Adelaide. One day, I will win the Nobel Prize!”  Well, she won the nickname ‘Nobie’ then, and it seems just a matter of time for the Nobel Prize now that she has won the Rhodes Scholarship!

During the formalities of the End of Semester celebrations, we all raised our glasses to congratulate Nobie on a splendid achievement!

Read more:  UNSW Law provides sixth Rhodes Scholar in six years

• Positive Psychology: The Science of Flourishing

End of 2018 Academic Year Formal Dinner

Friday, 26 October 2018  6:00 – 9:00 pm

Katrina Alvir BA BEd(Hons) DipPsych

Katrina Alvir has taught and mentored high school girls and their parents for over 18 years in Australia and abroad. She studied a Bachelor of Arts in English and History and a Postgraduate Bachelor of Teaching with Honours. She has recently completed a Diploma of Positive Psychology in Melbourne. As a trained teacher and mentor Katrina has extensive experience in working directly with adolescent girls in schools, as well as working closely with their parents. Katrina is passionate about supporting parents in one of their most challenging and important roles – guiding their daughters through their adolescent years.

Her current project is REAL (Real Excellence & Attitude for Life) – a character and virtues program she is creating and implementing at Tangara School for Girls. This program is for girls in years 7-10. Katrina is incorporating the science of character and strengths research, positive psychology interventions and the research in neuroscience and brain plasticity into the REAL program. She hopes to promote a more engaging and compelling case for young people to live a life of virtue, grow in character and ultimately live happier lives.

Katrina is also a workshop facilitator for is an educational organisation run by a group of young women based in Sydney and Melbourne. aims to help girls value th from the inside out, by running highly interactive workshops in areas such as holistic beauty, genuine friendship, social media and identity. Katrina sees fashion as a means of self-expression and believes in promoting a healthy appreciation, rather than obsession, with beauty.

Katrina has presented to girls, parents, mentors and educators in Sydney, Melbourne and internationally.

• Launching: Philippines Service Project 2019

Wouldn’t you like your summer holidays to be more fun, more adventurous…and more meaningful?

Join us for our annual service project abroad to a developing country.   Our destination this year is the beautiful island of Bohol is Central Visayas, Philippines.

This will be our third consecutive project to the village of Villalimpia, and we are making progress in our aim to alleviate poverty and improve their standard of living.  Implementing the project of Reledev Australia (, Creston College has partnered with Foundation for Professional Training, Inc ( and Banilad Center for Professional Development (BCPD).

Philippines Service Project 2019

Location:  Barangay Villalimpia, Loay Bohol, Philippines


Loay is a 5th municipal income class municipality in the province of Bohol, Philippines located at the mouth of the Loboc River. According to the 2015 census, it has a population of 16,691.

In 2013, the island of Bohol was the epicentre of a 7.2 magnitude earthquake almost 300 dead, followed in 3 months by the devastation of super typhoon Haiyan.

In 2015, 1 in 4 families in Bohol live under the poverty line.

The Project


  • Teaching Grades 5-6: English/Maths/Science; disaster-preparedness (typhoon, earthquake, basic first aid)
  • Building: 4-5 classrooms need repair; repair stage; repaint school fence
  • Beach forefront clean-up


  • Prepare teaching resources for grade school lessons
  • Construct toilets for families most in need
  • Basic nutrition program
  • Survey Waste Management and Environmental Care program

What we aim to do in 2019

  • Medical/Nutrition mission
  • Construction (eg.toilets/showers/painting)
  • Implement Waste Management program
  • Community garden installation


24 January – 9 February 2019 – to and from Sydney.  Includes overnights stays in Manila each way.


$2100 Includes flights, full R&B and all transport.  PLUS $350 fundraising for project materials.

DONATIONS FOR THE PROJECT are Tax-deductible:  


Reledev Australia Limited
Westpac, BSB 032 157
Acct. no.  18 1520

IMPORTANT  Please email the details of your donation.


• Expand Beyond: Kayla Amos’ latest art experiment dazzles




Kayla Amos, a proud resident of Creston College, is a multi-disciplinary artist currently in her third year of studying Fine Arts with Honours at UNSW.


Artwork Details

Kayla Amos

Expand Beyond (2018)

Plexi-glass, two-way acrylic mirror, acrylic glass paint, wood, glue, lighting equipment

165.5 cm x 23.5 cm x 29.5 cm

Artist Statement

Stemming from the notion of expanding from traditional methods of painting, Expand Beyond, breaks from traditional paint on canvas to explore the possibilities of painting in the modern era.

Precisely about painting itself, the work questions what painting can be while holding roots to some of the fundamental elements of painting, namely colour and luminosity, presented though a different lens.

Expand Beyond, specifically focuses on the traditional technique of glazing in which the painter applies a thin layer of colour onto the canvas surface to build an image. This glazing technique creates a luminosity that cannot be achieved by any other means.

Drawing from this technique, Expand Beyondconsists of plexi-glass panels that each have a glazed layer of colour corresponding to the colour wheel and hinting at colour theory, the history of colour and the continued evolution of its use within painting.

Playing with perception and the viewers awareness, I have also incorporated see-through double-sided mirrors within the work. These mirrors play with and interrupt what should be seen and what is seen, varying views from your own reflection to the full transparent layering of colour.

As an installation piece, the colours the viewer perceives changes as they move and interact with the work. The light projecting through the panels extends the colour beyond the physical work itself to incorporate the space. The light also blending the projected colours and again hinting at the use of the colour wheel and processes of painting.

From The Artist

For me, Expand Beyond, has been very experimental and a challenge to push myself beyond my comfort zone and what I have previously done. Personally, the work speaks of having the courage to step beyond your current self to pursue what is only dreamt of and what lies in the unknown realm. My hope is the work will be an encouragement to continue until that dream becomes reality, and when you finally see it lit up, it will be more beautiful and will expand beyond what you ever imagined.

For commissions or to say hello feel free to contact Kayla via:

Also check out Kayla’s Instagram for updates on her current work @kaylaamosartist

• Dream, Dare, Do: MCS meets the Big Y

Beginning of 2018 Semester 2 Dinner

Dr Anne-Marie Irwin, School of Education, University of Notre Dame, School of Education

Friday, 3 August 2018  6:00 – 9:00 pm


Dr. Anne-Marie Irwin is an educator based in Sydney, Australia. She has taught in Catholic and independent schools for over 35 years. Anne-Marie is an academic and researcher at the University of Notre Dame Australia (Sydney campus), where she currently lectures in Religious Education. Her research interests lie in infants and primary education, autonomous learning and religious education. Anne-Marie’s doctoral dissertation investigated ways in which Cavalletti’s work could be adapted for successful implementation in a Catholic school environment.

Anne-Marie is also a film-maker, establishing small Sydney-based media entities such as Upper Zone Media and Bounty Pictures.


  • Religious Education
  • English Education
  • Philosophy
  • Teacher Education
  • Theology
  • Virtues Education
  • Primary Education
adapted from the University of Notre Dame Website:

• First Woman in Opus Dei to be named ‘Blessed’

Guadalupe Ortiz de Landázuri, a professor of Chemistry, is one step closer to be beatified by the Catholic Church.  In June 9, 2018, Pope Francis approved a miracle attributed to Guadalupe’s intercession, an overnight cure of a cancer.  True to Opus Dei’s mission of spreading the Church’s message of being holy in one’s profession, Guadalupe was an academic and also headed the first university residence of Opus Dei in Spain, and later started centres of learning and culture in Mexico.

• Same-Sex Marriage: Marriage Equality vs Marriage Quality

When our forebears talked about ‘marriage’ – it needed not be ‘qualified’ – everyone knew what it meant; everyone acknowledged its purpose.  They came into the world, as have many generations before them, as fruit of this natural union – a commitment -universally understood as marriage.  Fast-track to 2018:  this bedrock concept of marriage has crumbled – but to what end?  What are the reasons behind this, and what are the consequences for humanity and for society?  Are we really better off than our forebears?

Our guest speaker, Caitlin West, is an actress, performer, singer, playwright and stage director! She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Masters of English Studies from the University of Sydney.  She was Academic Tutor at Creston College from 2016-2017, and continues to mentor current students.  Her most recent short play (with Hannah Cox) Tammy & Kite (2016) ‘explores the bounds of the imagination and knowledge of children in situations that are both beyond their understanding and heartbreakingly close to home’ Montague Basement.  Caitlin and Hannah wrote and performed this play that ‘beautifully articulates the resilience of childhood and the enduring power of friendship’ The AU Review.

Thursday, 24 May 2018  8:30 pm  Creston College Common Room (followed by supper)

• Sarah Ampil – Soprano comes back to Creston

End of Semester Formal Dinner Special Guest

‘A true professional is Creative’

Wednesday, June 6 2018  6:00 – 9:00 pm

Sarah Ampil (soprano) holds a Bachelor of Music from The University of New South Wales, and a Master of Music Studies (Performance) and Graduate Diploma in Music (Opera Performance) from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She is an alumna of the Pacific Opera Young Artists Program.

Sarah was the winner of the 2016 Sydney Eisteddfod Joan Sutherland Memorial Award. In the same year, she was runner-up in the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Aria Competition, and a semi-finalist in the IFAC Australian Singing Competition. She has also previously been named the winner of the Sydney Eisteddfod Operatic Aria (21-25 years) and the Penrith City Aria.

In 2017, Sarah made two exciting operatic role debuts: as Micaëla in Carmen for Central Coast Opera, and as Sandrina in La Finta Giardiniera for Operantics. Other operatic highlights include Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo for Brisbane Festival (Australian Brandenburg Orchestra); La Traviata (Opera Projects, Sydney); Suor Angelica, Adamo’s Little Women and Williamson’s English Eccentrics (Sydney Conservatorium Opera Studio); and various scenes for the Lisa Gasteen National Opera School with the Queensland Symphony Orchestra. During her time at the Sydney Conservatorium, she also appeared as a soprano soloist in Bernstein’s MASS: A Theatre Piece at the Sydney Opera House.

A keen interpreter of oratorio, art song and concert repertoire, Sarah has been engaged as a featured artist with various ensembles, including Leichhardt Espresso Chorus, Willoughby Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Conservatorium Symphony, and the Burgundian Consort.  Recent performances include Haydn’s The Creation with the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra and Box Hill Chorale, and Mozart’s Requiem with the UNSW Collegium Musicum Choir.

Sarah has been very fortunate to work with several accomplished conductors, mentors and coaches through a variety of initiatives. These include workshops and showcases at the IFAC Handa New Zealand Singing School (facilitated by world-class tutors, including David Harper, Peter Lockwood and Christine Douglas), masterclasses at the WAAPA International Art Song Academy (led in 2017 by Dr Graham Johnson OBE and Dennis O’Neill CBE), and a masterclass by internationally-acclaimed soprano Renée Fleming as part of the Sydney Opera House Opera Awards.


• On Chinese Medicine

TCMD1001: what and why  Y & Y

Is the title cryptic enough? (Still…nothing beats Cate Djong’s torturous 0-week Cryptic Dinner!)

Alfred Young is an alumnus of UNSW Sydney, finishing a Bachelor of Medical Science in 2015 before embarking on his final goal of training as a Chinese Medicine Practitioner.  He is currently in his third year of Bachelor of Health Science in Traditional Chinese Medicine at the University of Technology Sydney. However, he is best known as the brother of our long-time resident, Alison!

Join us in demystifying the science and art of Chinese Medicine from our budding local expert!

Thursday, 17 May 2018  7:00 pm  Creston College Common Room followed by supper