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In March, winners and runners-up for the 2024 Simpson Prize were announced and then honoured at a ceremony at Parliament House, Canberra, officiated by The Hon Jason Clare MP, Minister for Education.

Students attended a three-day 2024 Simpson Prize Canberra Study Program. Highlights included the visit to Government House to meet Their Excellencies, The Governor-General and Mrs Hurley; the Simpson Prize Awards Ceremony at Parliament House officiated by The Hon Jason Clare MP, Minister for Education; and the Last Post Ceremony and wreath laying at the Australian War Memorial.

The Simpson Prize invites entries from Years 9 and 10 students, focusing on the service of Australians in World War I. This year, eight winners and eight runners-up – two from each state and territory – were selected from more than 1,000 entries, the highest number of entries in five years.

Now in its 25th year, this national competition continues to be the Commonwealth of Australia’s only national commemoration competition. It is also unique in its use of primary and secondary sources and actively complements the Australian Curriculum 9.0: History.

Students responded to the statement: Commemoration of the Anzac tradition has widespread support in Australia despite different historical interpretations and debates about the nature and significance of the Anzac legend.

The College’s, Daniel Kim (Year 11), was announced as New South Wales’ runner-up. He shared an excerpt from his essay and describes what it means to him to participate in this national competition.

“… commemoration of the Anzac legend has shifted significantly since its origin. While many regard its original ideals as ‘militarist, misogynist and anachronistic’, it has come to incorporate more civic virtues as well as the recognition of women and Indigenous people. Though commemoration may wax and wane, by adapting the legend can maintain its currency and popularity.”

When I first began writing for the 2024 Simpson Prize, I had no idea of the potential success it could bring me, as the year before I entered the same competition without any achievements. The initial process in writing this essay was challenging, as I lacked knowledge about the topic. As I wasn’t very familiar with Australian history, this competition led me to a path where there was an abundance of unexplored territory. By the time I had finished, I had an infinitely greater understanding of the true culture in the nation’s history, especially about the Anzacs. Winning is a very special feeling. It gives a sense of accomplishment, pride and joy in one, and this is exactly how I felt. It was even sweeter, considering how I had come from a previously failed entry, to now being a runner-up, who was able to represent both.

The Scots College is a proud member of the following associations.

The Presbyterian Church (New South Wales) Property Trust T/A The Scots College, Sydney Australia
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William Elder


Mr Alan Elder was born in Scotland and migrated to Australia with his parents at a young age. He attended The Scots College for all his schooling, graduating in 1944. He played 1st XI Cricket and was a member of the College Cadet Unit. After leaving school Mr Elder studied accountancy and retained a life-long love of the College, especially the Pipes and Drums. Mr Elder never married, however the significant bequest he left will allow his Scots family to remember him through the Lang Walker Business Centre.