Festivities, Food and Founders: South Side School Turns 30

Preparations for Clairvaux Mackillop College’s annual Founder’s Day celebration which will take place on August 5th are already underway, with this year marking the 30th anniversary of the amalgamation of single-sex schools, Clairvaux College and Mackillop College.

Only two co-educational Catholic schools in the Greater Brisbane region have been founded through the merging of single-sex schools and Clairvaux Mackillop is the oldest, the other being Southern Cross Catholic College at Redcliffe.

Principal of the Upper Mount Gravatt high school, Dr Andrea O’Brien, describes the event as “one of the main highlights of the year” as the college “reflect and appreciate” the generous work of their founders, Blessed Edmund Rice and Saint Mary Mackillop.

Since this year is the 30th anniversary, Dr O’Brien revealed that various new activities will be added to the celebrations including the creation of a “special mural to signify this special occasion”.

“Founder’s Day will begin with a traditional liturgy … followed by a communal CMC picnic with food stalls, inter-house competitions, trivia competitions, theatre sports, ensemble bands playing and novelty games in the afternoon” said Dr O’Brien.

30 stalls will be set up “to incorporate the theme of 30 years” said Benjamin Mills, one of the two Student Leaders for Tradition and Celebrations in charge of organising the afternoon activities.

Mr Mills added that the day is “just about community” and that he aims to see the students and staff “really embracing the community spirit”.

In 2014 a new tradition was added to the Founder’s Day festivities in the form of the ‘CMC Gift’ where the whole school gather at the end of the day to watch the fastest boy and girl from each house compete in a 100 metre sprint.

Dr O’Brien hopes that by participating in the myriad of events planned on Founder’s Day, the students will “learn and appreciate community spirit and grow in the spirit of [the] Founders”.


This piece was written for KJB120: Newswriting, a unit in my Journalism degree at QUT.

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