Such focus is put on scholarship and bursary programmes nowadays, as an apparent justification for the existence of independent education, that it actually belittles something far more important. One of the real strengths of Melbourne Grammar School is the diversity of the student body, which is made possible, in large part, by this very programme.
Diversity is evident everywhere at MGS, whether it be diversity of subject, discussion, experience, thought or background. The strength of the School's diversity is no more apparent than the 300-plus students who are currently able to study at MGS, thanks to either a scholarship or bursary that they have either been awarded or given.
In today's increasingly challenging economic environment, this topic is becoming widely discussed within our community. Some families of our alumni wonder whether the cost of financing third, fourth or fifth generations is possible, country families seeking boarding homes now contemplate long travel and time costs, and local families evaluate cost/benefit arguments versus public schools. We appreciate and understand all these very difficult issues. There are processes in place that enable the School to offer a variety of scholarships based on a number of personal circumstances, some of which address academic or musical ability. Scholarships are there to lighten the load, but also to reward excellence.
Many of these scholarships have been endowed by individuals or families who recognise the strength and depth of diversity at the School. They want to ensure this continues well into the future and this is the major driving force for those potential donors seeking to truly make a difference.
Diversity can be a point of difference. At MGS we work hard to better prepare our students – not just academically, but also emotionally and culturally – to face the challenges of the changing world we live in. Globalisation has opened up tremendous opportunity, but also presented real challenges to cultural differences. By enabling diversity of and within our student body, we are facilitating real-life experiences for them and are better preparing our children to strive towards understanding and empathy.
Our Indigenous boys give us insight into historical injustice, but also current challenges they still face. Our Papua New Guinea boys show us unbelievable strength of character and positivity. Our overseas students impart aspects of their culture on our community. Our country boys share the tangible impact of climate change in their communities, while our scholars give tremendous inspiration through their dedication and perseverance. These students, all mixed together through the friendships and understanding they kindle at School, are our point of difference and long may this be what MGS stands for.
To learn more about the huge difference you can make in a young student's life by giving to our Scholarship or Bursary fund (including our Indigenous and Papua New Guinea funds), please call Director of Development Rachael Henshilwood on 03 9865 7683 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.