The Ashburner Society is the College’s student academic honour society, which aims to promote ‘good thinking’ in the spirit of our first Rhodes scholar, Mr Richard Ashburner (’23). A small team of Scots students lead the Society and, with the looming federal election, they decided on a political theme for their Term 1 meeting. The student team reached out to Mr Hamish Macdonald (’98), who has hosted Network Ten’s The Project and ABC’s Q+A as well as being a political journalist. The aim was not to promote the virtues of one political party or another, but rather to encourage good thinking on political issues.
Mr Macdonald generously agreed to visit Scots for the meeting and gave an inspiring demonstration of the power of good questioning to inspire critical thinking. We never once heard Mr Macdonald’s political views; rather, he masterfully facilitated the boys in expressing and defending their views on various national issues, including climate change, relations with China and gender equality. The Principal, Dr Ian PM Lambert, gave some concluding comments, encouraging the boys to be aware of national issues before they get to voting age, so they can not only participate in elections but also influence community discussion of important issues.
The Ashburner Society student leadership team also presented at the Term 1 meeting the 2021 edition of The Scotian: The Journal of The Ashburner Society, a collection of student presentations and papers on various topics such as ‘The Economic and Health Impacts of COVID-19’, ‘Mental Health’, and the physiology behind why we cannot stop eating unhealthy foods.
Click here to see The Scotian cover page.
Caption: Mr Hamish Macdonald with Senior Scots students and Principal, Dr Ian PM Lambert at The Ashburner Society meeting.