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Our Lady’s celebrating the best of golden years

Our Lady's original class

Good old days: Students from the 1964 class of Our Lady’s College, Annerley, on the steps of the school’s new building; and (below left) Sr Lucy Tierney (centre) with some of the first senior students from 1967, including Elizabeth Purvis-Smith (left) the first college captain.

LEAVING school might be a significant milestone, but not for past pupils from Our Lady’s College, Annerley.

Instead of just moving on, many who have graduated from the college have been keen to maintain close connections with the school community.

Hundreds of them have returned this year to organise and celebrate the school’s 50th anniversary.

Past pupil association president Joanne Blanchfield was among those who planned the celebrations that will continue through until November.

Dr Blanchfield, a senior chemistry lecturer at the University of Queensland, was the last of four girls in her family who studied at Our Lady’s College.

The 1987 graduate and school captain said the school had a “nurturing atmosphere” that encouraged her to keep a close relationship with the college.
“My memory of the school was that it was like a big family,” Dr Blanchfield said.

She said the most memorable aspects of school life were “the people”.

Dr Blanchfield said her science teacher Neil Daly, who still teaches at the college, had inspired her now successful chemistry career.

She joined hundreds of other college graduates at a celebration Mass and dinner on the weekend of St Mary MacKillop of the Cross’ feast day as a tribute to the school’s founders, the Josephite Sisters.

Founding deputy and the college’s second principal Josephite Sister Lucy Tierney also attended the celebrations.

Principal Paula Goodwin said this was “a landmark year” for the college.

“The college is celebrating a proud tradition,” Ms Goodwin said.

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