By Jack MacKenzie, Year 9 Student
2018 Youth Summit
The Year 9 Applied Philosophy class was entered into the 2018 Youth Summit and would be the first Waverley College group to partake. We were tasked with creating a video presentation analysing one of the core values of our school. The Year 9 Applied Philosophy class choose to critically analyse the Wellbeing System that was introduced to Waverley in 2016. We made use of many of the school’s I.T. facilities and at the end of term 3, our video presentation was complete.
We left school on the morning bus to the train station, and headed into the Sydney CBD. On arrival at St Stephen’s Uniting Church, we were greeted by people involved with the summit. We passed the time in the lobby admiring the churches various ornaments in their cabinet from their illustrious history. Other schools would arrive and the summit soon began.
In the summit’s pursuit of diversity among the attending students, we were split up into different table groups with other schools, and got a chance to mingle with other participants that we wouldn’t have otherwise met. All of us met new people and learned a lot about other schools and their cultures that we may have been previously unaware of.
After we got to know our deskmates and were introduced to the hosts of the summit, such as rabbis, priests and politicians, we all began the presentations. There were presentations on various subjects, some on the subject of diversity, freedom, individuality in the form of videos or speeches. When a school presented we were given the chance to write about the presentation and provide our own thoughts a feelings regarding the new opinions we had been exposed to, which broached conversation among the tables.
Our video, analysing the merit of the new Wellbeing system at Waverley, was shown along with the presentations of the other schools advertising their own core values. After various other proceedings were dealt with, we crossed the road into NSW Parliament House and into their theatrette. Four videos were chosen to be presented, and it was once we were seated it was announced that our video had been selected as one of them. It was not supposed to be a competition but saying that we weren’t quietly ecstatic would be a canard. We were fortunate enough to have various politicians and personalities in attendance, such as professional world-champion boxer, Billy Dib and Rob Stokes, minister for Education, to provide feedback and responses to the videos shown.
The politicians and personalities expressed their thoughts on each of the videos. Once we had viewed each of the selected four presentations, one of the students from another school recited some slam poetry. There were some short concluding speeches before we returned to the Parliament House foyer, gazed at some contemporary art, took some photos and returned to Waverley College.
Overall, working on the presentation and attending the Youth Summit was a great experience, and the small day out was a good way to meet new people and gain new understandings of the values of others and gives everyone a chance to create something powerful. Involvement in the Youth Summit is highly recommended to any student in Applied Philosophy next year.