Community-minded student awarded Long Tan award

Published on LEUT Kelli Lunt (author), Katherine John (photographer)

Location(s): Sydney, NSW

Director Navy Training Captain Mike Spruce (left) presented St Andrew's Cathedral School student Jessie Quinn with the Australian Defence Force Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Award for her contribution to the Year 7 Drama Club and her Community work including helping to build a school in Fiji at a ceremony on 25 November. (photo: Katherine John)
Director Navy Training Captain Mike Spruce (left) presented St Andrew's Cathedral School student Jessie Quinn with the Australian Defence Force Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Award for her contribution to the Year 7 Drama Club and her Community work including helping to build a school in Fiji at a ceremony on 25 November.

Community Service and strong school leadership was recognised in Year 10 student Jessie Quinn from St Andrew’s Cathedral School (SACS) when she received an Australian Defence Force (ADF) Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Award on 25 November.
 
Jessie was nominated by several people for her role in the Year 7 Drama Club and her sense of community, which was demonstrated through her participation in World Vision’s 40 Hour Famine and Operation Christmas Child - a school based initiative run through the charity ‘The Samaritan’s Purse’ with which she filled shoeboxes with items for children in developing regions of the world. She also visited Fiji with ten other students to help build houses through the Koriopita Project.
 
A testament to her contribution was also achieving a Silver Certificate in Community Service which acknowledges 75 hours of Service.
 
SACS Head of Middle School, David Smith said that Jessie was a mature and dedicated member of the school community and was an ideal candidate to receive the award.
 
“Jessie engages widely in sport, music, drama and the co-curricular life of the school. Her engagement in the classroom is outstanding. She was an effective Middle School leader and a marvellous role model to our younger girls,” Mr Smith said.
 
“She approaches school life in a whole-hearted, enthusiastic and responsible manner.”
 
The ADF Long Tan Leadership and Teamwork Awards started in 2006 to recognise students who demonstrate leadership and teamwork within both the school and the broader local community.
 
At the same time, they recognise those who display strong values, such as doing one’s best, respect for others and ‘mateship’ - characteristics that are integral to Australian society.
 
Winning students are selected by their school principal based on the criteria set out by the ADF. Each school may select one student from each of Years 10 and 12.
 
Director Navy Training, Captain Mike Spruce presented Jessie the award at SACS, also the high school he attended. He said it was an honour to present the award to a student who had demonstrated values that are held in high regard in the ADF.
 
“Young people like you are the future custodians of these values and we, your Defence Force, expect and anticipate that you will do so. In young leaders like Jessie Quinn I can see that the values we espouse remain strong here at St Andrew’s,” CAPT Spruce said.
 
“The Defence Force provides the Long Tan Awards so that young people can appreciate the wider role we play and the importance we attach to the culture of service and duty. For the most part, this stands us apart from many other organisations and the community expects its Defence Force to display and embrace the qualities linked to the Long Tan Awards.
 
“It is an organisation of ordinary people who are able to achieve extraordinary things when working together.”
 
Presenting the award had special significance to Captain Spruce, having graduated from SACS in 1975. By coincidence, he had belonged to the same House as Jessie - ‘Salisbury.’
 
Jessie said it was a great honour to receive the prestigious award.
 
“In our history class we learn about the dedication and sacrifices made by members of the defence forces to provide security for our country. I feel privileged to now hold the ADF Long Tan Award and thank the ADF for acknowledging students who continue the principles of mateship and teamwork,” Jessie said.