Lisa Williams, St Margaret’s College – Service to Teaching – Health Education and Middle Schooling

When the classroom doors at St Margaret’s College close at the end of Year 10 and the content begins to fade over the summer, it will be the strength of character developed through the Rite Journey programme that will stay with the students for a lifetime.

Lisa encountered the Rite Journey programme in 2010; a programme designed to focus on rites of passage for young men transitioning to adulthood. Lisa saw an opportunity to create a parallel programme for young women.

Lisa was the first person to run this programme in the world and it has since gone from strength to strength, now the jewel in the crown of St Margaret's College Middle School.

Lisa's innovation and adaptation of the programme for a girls’ school have produced remarkable results.  It adds an important layer of self-awareness and appreciation for the girls at a time in their lives when they may feel awkwardly caught between childhood and young womanhood.

Lisa’s influence certainly extends beyond St Margaret's College as she contributes to the inclusion, success, and character development of students throughout Australasia.

It is tempting to judge a school on its academic results or the number of trophies in the cabinet, but the true measure of a school might better be judged on the social presence of the students, their confidence, their empathy, and their positive energy.  It is these character strengths that will set students up for lifelong success.

Lisa Williams’ influence in these areas will extend far beyond today, for the gifts she and the St Margaret's College Rite Journey team have uncovered with the girls, will reap rewards well into their futures.