A look ahead and behind

Community Events and News from the Director of Advancement Paul Galea

This year is the 40th year of IGS. The plan from the Director of Advancement is to grow and strengthen the connections between our School, its immediate current community and its wider community — to celebrate and showcase what 40 years of ‘IGSness’ means.


Looking back at our alums achievements

One of the great ways to showcase ‘IGSness’ is to look at what our past students are achieving. To this end, there will be interviews, shared in written and podcast form, with former students and teachers from across the decades. There might even be an interview with the lone remaining foundation teacher! Secret and very tense negotiations are continuing on that front! These interviews give a fascinating look at what has happened at IGS as well as intriguing views into the many and varied journeys our Alums have undertaken since they left our school.

There have been 40 or so interviews that have taken place already – you can find them in our News stories (click on the Alums tab).

Our Alums are involved in a wide variety of fields, ranging from high finance to mechatronic engineering to nursing to careers in the arts. It has been extremely gratifying to record these interviews as education is not a ‘black and white’ endeavour. When the students walk out of the Kelly Street gates for the last time, we know we have done our best to prepare them for their futures but we never really know for sure how it will all turn out.

The interviews show that ten, twenty, thirty and even nearly forty years down the track, IGS is producing successful, happy and good human beings, in an incredibly wide and varied number of family situations, fields of endeavour and locales. ‘Then and now’ photographs complete the picture.

As well, there will be regular WITWATS (Where In The World Are They). These are snapshots of the various places our Alums are and a brief outline of what they are doing. Again, this is interesting and cause for thanks. Some are just starting out on their post-school lives, some are mid-journey and some are happily settled into their life situation. Photographs from now and from their time at IGS add to the story.

Continuing the IGS connection

Reunions of all sorts are a very important part of reconnecting our Alums to our school. Obviously, there are Class Reunions — usually after five, ten and twenty years. These are chances to catch up with old school mates and sometimes ex-teachers, and are great fun. Often the reunion will start with a tour of the school, as it has changed so much in the last 40 years. This is always greeted with ‘ooohs and aaaahs’ and the more than occasional ‘I wish this was here when I was at IGS’.

There are also ‘place’ reunions, where IGS Alums around the world can get together to meet fellow ex-students and teachers. In the past there have been such reunions in London, New York, Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Canberra, Melbourne and Dar as Salaam (I was the only one at that one!) Our school is called International Grammar and we do try to encourage our students to get out into the world! This year’s reunion schedule is an exciting one and includes a 40 Year Anniversary London Reunion.

For forthcoming Alum events click here.

Making new connections

Other initiatives, in conjunction with the school’s wonderful PTF, hope to broaden connections in our community. We will have a stall in the Mardi Gras Fair on Sunday February 18 (why not come for a visit?) and the Trivia Night will take place on Saturday September 21 (save the date!). These are events that will celebrate our school community and its values. The PTF are fantastic people who have other excellent community events planned for the year so stay tuned for them. In fact, why not become part of the PTF? It is a very rewarding, though often unheralded, way of contributing to our greater community.


Celebrating success — Alum of the Year

The Alum of the Year will also be continuing this year. We are looking for ex-students who are doing great things making their way in the world, while demonstrating the core values of IGS diversity, authenticity, vibrancy, connectedness and personal achievement.

Previous winners were Nick Jordan and Ben Gran The award is presented at Speech Night.

Anyone in the IGS community can nominate an alum for Alum of the Year so if you are aware of any of our ex-students doing wonderful things, please email me on paulg@igssyd.nsw.edu.au. The more nominations, the better.
You might also want to join the Alum Social Media — they are slightly ‘quirkier’ than the main school social media platforms and may be something you would enjoy following. 

In finishing, I ask that any of you out there in ‘IGS Land’ let me know of any and all interesting Alums you might be aware of — I am very interested in learning about our ex-students!


Paul Galea
Director of Advancement