Prepared for success - Maya Rees

St John Fisher College (SJFC) commemorated ANZAC Day this year with a liturgy highlighting the individual and collective sacrifices service men and women have made for us to experience the freedoms we are all privileged to enjoy today.maya.jpg

As part of the service, special guest and SJFC parent, Lieutenant Colonel Natalie Evans, Senior Health Officer of the 6th Combat Support Brigade, provided an incredible reflection of the ANZAC spirit through the lens of healthcare workers during Australia’s historical military engagements. This was a timely reflection on the often unspoken, though vital, contribution of nurses during times of conflict.

SJFC alumni, Maya Rees, who was College Captain during her graduating year of 2018, also spoke to current students about how her time at SJFC laid the foundations to her pathway into the Australian Defence Force.

"During my senior year I was inspired by a returning Fisher girl, who spoke to the college at an assembly about her career in Defence – this, coupled with my previous experience of the Brisbane Airshow, inspired me to apply for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), which I studied and prepared for while completing Year 12,” Ms Rees said.

“The college was incredibly supportive, I worked with my student liaison, Ms Winlaw, to find opportunities during breaks and between study periods to complete the application process. This enabled me to not only focus on my senior studies but work hard towards my goal to join the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA). I was lucky to be able to commence at ADFA in 2019 after my graduation from St John Fisher.

“My greatest lesson so far is it is ok to fail. You can grow a lot from messing up and rising to the challenge of learning from your mistakes – dig deep into your resilience, because every challenge should be embraced.

“My experience at the college definitely set me up for success – I was empowered by teachers who built up my confidence and supported my ambitions, and I was provided leadership opportunities which I made my own. This has allowed me to take on the challenges inherent to a career in Defence, and thrive in a typically male dominated industry.

“Now, with the spirit of ANZAC Day top of all our minds, it’s a great time to reflect on mateship, and the importance of looking after each other, because even after leaving St John Fisher College, student's paths will cross again. The values and foundations of being a Fisher girl will still unite them.”

Maya graduated ADFA with a Bachelor of Science majoring in Aviation and Geography at the end of 2021. She is currently posted to RAAF Base East Sale in Victoria and in coming weeks will commence training to become Air Traffic Controller at the School of Air Traffic Control.
© Brisbane Catholic Education​, St John Fisher College Bracken Ridge (2022)​