Old Aloysian Rebecca Andrew from the Class of 2014 was congratulated by the Duke of Edinburgh himself as she received her Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award during a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace where St Aloysius’ College was proud to be recognised for exceptional contribution to the programme.
The Head Master of St Aloysius’ College, Mr Browne, and the Head of Outdoor Education, Mr Bagshaw, were invited to receive an award at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the exceptional number of participants that St Aloysius’ College has presented for the Duke of Edinburgh Award in recent years.
One of the participants supported by the College was OA Rebecca Andrew who achieved the Bronze and Silver Awards as a pupil before completing her Gold Award as an OA in 2015.
Rebecca was invited to Buckingham Palace where she was presented with her award by the Duke of Edinburgh himself, Prince Philip, who showed great interest in her Gold Award canoeing expedition to Northern Västmanland in Sweden.
The Duke of Edinburgh also congratulated St Aloysius’ College on the continued popularity of the programme amongst those in the Green Blazer.
Since August 2015 the College has helped nine pupils complete the Duke of Edinubrgh Gold Award, 29 complete the Silver Award, and 45 complete the Bronze Award, confirming the College’s position as the largest provider of the Duke of Edinburgh Award in the West of Scotland.
It’s easy to see why the Duke of Edinburgh Award fits so well within the wider co-curricular framework of St Aloysius’ College’s Magis Curriculum given that the official mission of the Award is to ‘inspire, guide and support young people in their self-development and recognise their achievements’.
And the Aloysians who have completed Duke of Edinburgh award in recent years have certainly been inspired to volunteer in the service of others, improve their physical condition and develop the practical and social skills required to complete their challenging expeditions.
This year’s Bronze expedition saw the adventurous Aloysians walk from Strathyre to Brig O’ Turk or Canoe along Loch Venechar and Loch Voil in the Trossachs for two days and one night.
The extended Silver expedition, which lasts 3 days and 2 nights, set pupils the challenging task of trekking from Tyndrum at the Northern point of the Trossachs to Aberfoyle at the Southern point, or canoeing through the water ways of Loch Lomond National Park.
As always, the most challenging expeditions of the Duke of Edinburgh programme were reserved for Aloysians completing the Gold Award Expeditions which require four days and three nights of gruelling physical activity.
This year’s Gold Expedition gave Senior School pupils the opportunity to canoe along the Great Glen of the Scottish Highlands or master the white waters of the River Spey’s Spey Descent.
Mr Bagshaw, the Head of Outdoor Education at St Aloysius’ College, offered his congratulations to all the Aloysians who showed such great dedication, resilience and skill to successfully complete the expedition phases of their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.