The Thistle - An E-Newsletter of Scotch College, Perth, Western Australia

Stanford University Tour

From the shores of Swanbourne to the heart of Silicon Valley 

  In 2016, Stanford President Marc Tessier-Lavigne, asserted the university's strategic vision for the future of its teaching and learning programmes; 'to extend the frontier of knowledge and solve real-world problems, to prepare students to think broadly and critically and to contribute to the world.' In the pursuit of this vision, he went on to prioritise the strengthening of its existing partnerships across the globe. S cotch College has been lucky enough to have shared this vision as a collaborating partner since 2015.       

Just two weeks ago, 40 Scotch boys from Years 9 and 10 returned from Stanford, representing our third cohort to have attended the Stanford International Institutes programme. This brings the number of Scotch boys to have experienced this transformational learning opportunity to 112. Once again, the boys were fantastic ambassadors for the College.  

The Stanford Pre-Collegiate International Institutes is a two-week immersive residential programme that sees students from around the world introduced to Stanford's progressive educational approach through engagement in daily academic workshops, multi-cultural events, a multi-national Global Solutions Project, a Silicon Valley Entrepreneurs Panel and a host of other unique learning experiences.   

The daily workshops introduced the boys to a host of world class experts in their fields. Drawing on her wealth of experience and expertise,  Areen Shahbari , delivered an empowering workshop on entrepreneurship,  Joel Simon  shared a life-time of experience as one of the world's foremost travel photographers,  Rabindra Shivnaraine  showed the boys how to extract DNA from a strawberry and the gregarious  Margaret Reges  challenged the boys to embrace their creative spirit via a journey into Dadaism. Their overwhelming intellectual humility and open-mindedness were character traits not lost on our boys.  

The Multicultural Exhibition represented a highlight for many of the boys and offered a platform for students to share their numerous and varied artistic and musical talents with the Scotch College performance featuring pipes, drums, guitars, vocals and piano and a 40 strong choir. The boys' rendition of John Farnham's 'You're the Voice' caused a near stampede as the 400+ crowd representing over 20 countries flocked to the stage.   

The Global Solutions Project presentations gave students an authentic opportunity to present their collective vision for an island nation. Each team spent many days wrestling with the economic, geographic, cultural and political dimensions of building a nation under particular constraints and challenges. As a result, many friendships were formed, and the spirit of international mindedness could not have been more evident.  

It was particularly heartening to see the level of gratitude the boys showed towards the Scotch staff who attended and supported them with so much care and attention throughout the tour. We now look ahead to 2021 for the next cohort of Scotch boys to share this wonderful experience and continue our partnership with Stanford.  

Mr Sam Sterrett 
Enrichment Coordinator