Oakleigh Grammar hosts inaugural Pursuit of Excellence Awards

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Oakleigh Grammar has recognised students at its inaugural Pursuit of Excellence Award ceremony held at the school’s Conference Centre and attended by students, staff, dignitaries and parents.

In a moving address, 2023 Alumni and recipient of an Academic Outcomes Award, Arthur Demetriou passionately implored students to give their senior years their best by having an end goal in mind. 

Oakleigh Grammar
Class of 2023 Pursuit of Excellece Award recipients. Photo: Supplied.

Arthur used tennis as a frame of reference. Tennis legends he said, had these attributes in common: “Work ethic, mindset, motivation, and determination. They know why they are there, what they are doing, and where they want to go… and it’s no different for each and every one of us… stop those thoughts in your head that say ‘I’m not smart, I can’t do it’… because they are plain and simply wrong… all your teachers… are here to help.” 

Imploring students to remember one of the seven habits (for highly successful people), Arthur said: “Begin with the end in mind so that you know where to start.”

Quoting tennis great Novak Djokovic, Arthur continued: “So what is the difference between number one and number 500? What goes on between the two ears and how dedicated, motivated and how brilliant we are.” 

Oakleigh Grammar
2023 Graduate Arthur Demetriou made an impassioned speech. Photo: Supplied.

Arthur who lives with cerebral palsy, concluded: “I could have made a million and one excuses, and they would have been plausible, so if I can strive for greatness, so can you.” Striking a chord with his audience, the applause was deafening.

Principal Mark Robertson said, “It’s important that we as a school celebrate achievement. Achievement is not just about the grades, but is recognising and celebrating the effort that goes into that final outcome. Hard work, dedication and perseverance are three key qualities… they’re qualities I believe will serve our class of 2023 very well into the future in their university life and into their careers.

Oakleigh Grammar
Principal Mark Robertson address students, staff and parents. Photo: Supplied.

Mr Robertson went on to thank Board Chairman Chris Damatopoulos: “He is fully committed to providing the resources and facilities to enable high achievement within our school. We are very fortunate at Oakleigh Grammar to have outstanding teachers who are committed to the endeavours of every young person in this school.”

Mr Damatopoulos asked the students to: “Remember the sacrifice your parents have made, remember your teachers and their commitment to you and… make a difference in society.”

Oakleigh Grammar
Oakleigh Grammar Chairman of the Board, Chris Damatopoulos congratulated 2023 Dux Noah Peoples. Photo: Supplied.

2023 graduates Noah Peoples (Dux), Aaron Neild (Dux Proximus), Jonathan Carmody, Arthur Demetriou, Eros Kene, Anastasia Konstantinidis, Christalena Kourdoulos, Maria Kourkoutzelos, Tony Pistikakis, Sivmeng Te, Charlotte Tsitas, and Satya Yellamelli, received Academic Excellence awards for achieving an ATAR of or above 80.

Current Year 12 students Arietta Apostolopoulos, Nicola Grigoropoulos and Jessica Peraic were recognised for achieving scores above 40 for subjects they completed in 2023 VCE examinations.

2023 graduates Emma Alexellis, Isabella Anastopoulos, Jonathan Carmody, Nicholas Doyle and Elena Georgiades received Excellence Awards for positive contribution to the school.

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