One of the unique aspects of Wesley College is the enthusiasm and passion shown by former students to come back and share their knowledge with current students.
This certainly proved true as we brought together 19 Old Collegians to share their career journeys with our Year 11 and 12 students for the inaugural Wesley NEXT Conference.
Alumni from a diverse range of professions from law and defence to finance, business, architecture, construction, engineering, marketing and events shared their stories and offered unique insights and valuable advice in a series of panel discussions designed to assist students as they begin to make decisions about their future.
Perhaps the strongest message that came through from our Old Collegians is the value of connections and the importance of building networks.
Each panelist spoke of the network Wesley created for them outside of the College and the doors that had been opened in their industries through various Wesley connections.
‘You have a much broader network than you actually realise. You have an Old Boys network, literally thousands of blokes working across Australia. If there is something you are interested in learning about, a job, sport, anything really – you can reach out to the Old Collegians network and they’ll be happy to put you in touch with people who would love to take the time to talk to you’ – Ben Manifold, Solicitor, The Minderoo Foundation and Tattarang (06-13).
Some shared stories of changes to career plans, highlighting to our students that what you think you want to do at age 17, isn’t always going to be what you are actually doing 10 or 20 years later.
Life is long, in a good way. You probably hear this ad nauseum. Your mark is not the ‘be-all and end- all’. There’s lots of different paths to get where into where you want to be. You don’t have to have it all figured out. – Brendyn Nelson, Senior Assistant State Counsel. State Solicitor’s Office (98-02).
Not only was the event fantastic and informative for students, it was an amazing opportunity to connect our alumni, and we look forward to hearing from more of our Old Collegians at the Wesley NEXT Conference in 2023.
‘I think it is so important to be constantly curious. There is always something new to learn.’ – Matthew Pound, Co-Founder & Director at Varsity Group (95-99).
A huge thank you must go to all of the panellists for generously giving their time to share their stories and offer advice:
Martyn Weir (86-90), Matthew Pound (95-99), Paul Bossong (95-00), Andrew McDougall (94-00), Ben Smythe (95-00), Jesse Wilson (95-00), Brendyn Nelson (98-02), James Habershon (98-02), Andrew Cumming (02-04), Josh Parsons (01-04), Pat Henning (02-07), Allan Dennis (07-08), Casey York (05-09), Matthew Jupp (06-10), Thomas Crane (01-11), Sang Yoon Moon (10-12), Ben Manifold (06-13), Matthew Williams (12-17), Jack Anderson (13-18).
Wesley NEXT is an exciting new initiative launched in 2021, with students in Year 10-12 embarking on a new suite of micro-credentials that are unlike anything else offered in Western Australia.
The course is built around developing real-world skills which aim to give our students a depth and breadth of opportunities that go beyond our traditional curriculum to develop their passions and skills for the next stage of their journey beyond Wesley College. You can find out more here.
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