St Joseph's Nudgee College Awards

Origins and Meanings

Year 8 Jack McInerney Academic Excellence Award

John ‘Jack’ McInerney was a teacher at Nudgee College from 1989 to 1995, holding the positions of Year 8 Master and Riley House Dean during that time. He was instrumental in bringing

about the change in the pastoral care system from a horizontal/year level approach to the vertical House system we have today. Jack had a gift for understanding the needs of students and will be particularly remembered for his work with the Year 8 students. During his educational career, he held three Principalships: St Mary's Charleville, St Mary's College Charters Towers; and St Teresa's Catholic College Abergowrie. In addition to these teaching posts, Jack spent time instructing Parent Effectiveness Training and Teacher Effectiveness Training, and served as Chairman on the Diocesan Education Council.

This award is presented to a Year 8 student who achieves academic excellence.

Year 9 Ben Carroll Memorial Excellence Award

Ben Carroll was a Year 11 student when he tragically passed away in a road accident in 1994. Ben is remembered as a behind-the-scenes contributor, being a rugby touch judge and managing the 1st XI Cricket team, as well as the Track and Field team. He was also a talented musician, playing the flute in multiple College ensembles.

This award is presented to a Year 9 student who achieves academic excellence.

Willie Gard Award for Strings Excellence

Willie Gard was a student from Herbert River in North Queensland (an hour‘s drive north of Townsville). He boarded at the College from 1911 to 1913. Willie was a good student and won academic prizes for Christian Doctrine, Arithmetic and Writing. He was a sportsman who played in the 2nd XV Rugby team and won events in the Hospital’s Cup athletics competition. These were the days before GPS competition officially started in 1918. Willie was also a musician and played violin in the College orchestra. The College received his beautifully restored violin in 2019, which has become a signature instrument within our strings ensemble.

This award is presented to a student who demonstrates exceptional talent with a string instrument.

The Maggie Shaw Prize for Year 7 Creative Writing

The namesake of Shaw House, Maggie Shaw’s career at Nudgee College spanned an incredible 36 years. A pioneer right from the start, Maggie negotiated working from home as a typist for the Headmaster at the time, Br Carroll, in 1961. To do this, she set up her typewriter on her veranda at Wavell Heights so she could work while watching her children play in the garden. The following year, when Br Hodda became the Headmaster of the College, Maggie was asked to work two days a week on campus, and her role continued to expand and adapt from there. In her more than three decades at the College, Maggie took on the roles of Principal’s secretary, registrar and receptionist, working with seven different Principals during that time.

This award is presented to a Year 7 student who demonstrates excellence in their writing ability.

Daniel Laherty Tennis Memorial Shield for Outstanding Sportsmanship

Daniel Laherty is one of two Nudgee College students who tragically passed away in 2001 from Meningococcal disease. Acting Principal at the time Michael Senior described it as one of the saddest times of his life, and one that provided the whole Nudgee College community with the time to feel the power of love and support that a community can give. As a Year 8 student, Daniel achieved success in rugby, cricket, and his great love, tennis. He was a strong academic performer, achieving an academic silver medal. He was also remembered as an avid reader.

This is awarded to a Tennis player who demonstrates outstanding sportsmanship.

Dr Robert Keane Award for Excellence in Music Theory

Commencing in March 2012, Dr Robert Keane was a stalwart of Nudgee College’s music community as a piano and theory of music tutor. Just before his retirement at the end of 2017, Robert composed nine original songs for an 11-piece rock band ensemble. The band performed the set, titled ANZAC Rocks: World War I in Nine Rock Songs, during the 2017 Regional Music Tour, as well as a special performance at the Queensland State Library. The work was commissioned as a part of the state government’s Queensland ANZAC Centenary Spirit of Service Grant.

This award is presented to a student who demonstrates excellence in music theory.

Boevink Family Swimming Trophy - Highest Individual Point Scorer at GPS Swimming Championship

Five Boevink brothers attended Nudgee College – Ron (NC 1977-80), Greg (NC 1980-84), Mark (NC 1983-87), Trevor (NC 1986-90) and Glen (NC 1996-2000). All were swimmers for the College, and Greg even went on to compete at Australian Championship meets. From breaking records to earning titles such as Captain and Age Champion, the Boevinks made their mark on Nudgee College Swimming.

This award is presented to the highest individual point scorer at the GPS Swimming Championship.

P.C. Neville Dux of English

Paul Neville was part of the inaugural intake of students at Nudgee College, commencing in 1891. Paul Condamine Neville was a staunch supporter of the art and science of the English language. He loved poetry and imbued upon his family the importance of ‘knowing where to put a comma’. The early iteration of The Paul Neville Gold Medal was for First Place at Nudgee College in the Queensland Junior Class examination. This was first awarded at Nudgee College in 1892. By the 1920s the medal was awarded for General Proficiency, which was more in line with Paul’s love of the English language. With the cessation of the Queensland Junior Examination in 1970, the award was given to the Dux of English in Year 11.

This award is presented to the Dux of English.

The Sir James Walker Cattle Club Most Valuable Member Award

Sir James Walker MBE was a foundation member and driving force beyond the National Stockman’s Hall of Fame in Longreach. He was very active within the local community of Longreach as a Councillor and Chairman. He was Chairman of the Capricornia and Central Western Electricity Boards. He was also Chairman of the Longreach Pastoral College. He established the Cumberland Santa Gertrudis Stud and the Wakefield Merino Sheep Property. The first stud cattle sale was held in 1958 and, with one exception, sales have been an annual event since. Cumberland has won acclaim throughout Australia for its success in the breeding of Santa Gertrudis cattle. He was very supportive of the Nudgee College Show Team, showing its stud cattle at the Longreach Show. He appreciated that the presence of the College at such rural shows was, and is, a significant contribution to and support for the respective cattle growers.

This award goes to the member of the Cattle Club who actively contributes to the efficient and effective running of the Cattle Club. The award is synonymous with the outstanding leadership in the cattle industry of its namesake.

Michael Oldbury Music Memorial Award for Outstanding Contribution

Michael Oldbury joined the College as the Head of Contemporary Music in 2001. He sadly passed away in 2004 at the age of 32 following an ongoing battle with cancer. In addition to being a supportive teacher who built positive relationships with boys and inspired them to achieve their dreams, he was a talented musician in his own right. He produced many CDs, and performed and recorded music for the 2003 live-action Peter Pan movie.

This award is presented to a student who makes a significant contribution to the College's Music program.

Br O’Brien Memorial Trophy College Oratory Champion

Br Francis Thomas O’Brien was first sent to work at Nudgee College in 1892, but relocated to Sydney after only a year. He returned in 1898, but just before the turn of the century, he returned to his birthplace of Ireland to serve as one of the deputies for the General Chapter of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He returned to Australia to complete a two-year stint as Superior of St Patrick’s College in Goulburn, before, for a third time, calling Nudgee College home. During his time at the College, he was prominent in the drawing and art classes, the Debating Society, as well as the Journal and Literary Society. His final role was Superior of St Joseph’s College Gregory Terrace before he retired in 1922, and passed away in 1927.

This award is presented to the Year 12 Oratory winner.

Br. D.V. Wallis cfc Rugby Trophy - Best & Fairest (1st XV)

Br Wallis was the manager of the 1st XV from 1984 to 2005. He was a member of the Nudgee College Brothers Community from 1973 to 1975, and 1982 to 2005. In 1999, he was awarded the Signum Fidei Award in recognition of his dedication to teaching, sport and the history of the College, and for the example he set as a Sign of Faith to the students, staff and Old Boys of the College. 

This award is presented to the best and fairest player in the 1st XV.

James J Delahunty Sportsman of the Year Award

Attending the College from 1917 to 1925, James Delahunty was a talented sportsman, playing in the 1st XV Rugby, 1st XI Cricket and 1st IV Tennis. After school, he pursued a career in pharmacy and was awarded a gold medal in his final chemist examination in 1929. From 1938 to 1940, he served as the President of the Pharmaceutical Society of Queensland. A strong leader, James also took on the roles of Chairman of the Queensland Rowing Council and Vice President of the Nudgee College Old Boys’ Association.

This award is presented to a student who has achieved significantly in one or more sports.

W A Collins Memorial Award for Conduct, Study and Co-curricular (previously ‘Sport’)

First awarded in 1935, when it was known as the W A Collins Cup, this award was donated by Old Boy William Aloysius Collins, who attended the College from 1900 to 1903. William grew up in Herberton in the Tablelands region, which is where he completed his apprenticeship as a pharmaceutical chemist after he left the College. After opening a pharmacy in Cairns in 1911, William became involved in civic life. In 1927 he was elected the Mayor of Cairns, a role which he held for 22 years.

This award is presented to a Year 12 Student who best fulfils the following criteria:

  • Conduct: Exemplary cooperation, effort and commitment to Nudgee College ideals.
  • Study: Exemplary commitment, effort, cooperation and respect for Nudgee College's academic ideals.
  • Co-curricular: Exemplary commitment, respect, effort and cooperation within the College's Sport or Performing Arts programs.
Year 10 RJH Elliott Bursary for Social Justice and Community Service

Born in Rockhampton, Richard James Hutton Elliott attended Nudgee College as a student in 1926 and finished in 1933. He captained the 2nd XI Cricket team in 1932 and 1933, and was a member of the 1st XV Rugby squad in 1933. After graduating, Richard attended the University of Queensland where he was Vice President of the Sports Union and was awarded a University Football Blue. Richard went on to become a dentist. He also served in World War II.

This bursary is presented to a student who makes a significant contribution to the College's Social Justice programs.

Shirley Agnew Memorial Award for Outstanding Participation

Shirley Agnew was the mother of three Old Boys, Michael, Christopher and Allister, from Rockhampton. She sadly passed away in 1982. At the time, Christopher was a boarder, Michael a recent Old Boy, and Allister was about to commence at the College.

This award recognises students with a deep commitment to and involvement in pastoral care activities.

David Carmody Cross Country Trophy - Open Champion

David Carmody was a boarder from Warwick who attended the College from 1985 to 1989, and was a Prefect in his final year. In GPS Cross Country, he won the 14 Years race in 1986 and the 16 Years race in 1988, with the latter being particularly monumental, winning by a margin of almost one minute over a six-kilometre distance. A talented athlete, David was also a member of two Premiership-winning teams in his Senior year – 2nd XI Cricket and 3rd XV Rugby – as well as competing at GPS Athletics (now Track and Field) all four years he was at the College, taking out the Age Champion title in 1988.

This award is presented to the Open Age Champion at GPS Cross Country.

The Kelleher Family Award for Consistent, Unrecognised Achievement

Brian Kelleher is a former Nudgee College teacher and Business Manager, as well as an Old Boy, whose involvement at College spanned 14 years. In his first year as the College’s Business Manager in the 1980s, he saved $100,000. He was also the Secretary of the College’s first Advisory Board, appointed by the Headmaster at the time Br Vince Connors in 1982.

The Kelleher family championed this award to recognise Year 12 students who largely work behind the scenes. It may be for a student who has worked across a multitude of activities or more intensely in one or two activities.

John Francis Treacy Memorial Award for Service to the Boarding Community

John Francis Treacy was a boarder at the College in the 1960s when he tragically passed away on campus. His Dormitory Master Br Brian Boulton and Headmaster Br James Hodda described John as always acting with propriety and kindness. Following his passing, Brothers and boys joined in a guard of honour leading to his Requiem Mass in the College Chapel.

The award was first presented in 2017 and is Boarding's most prestigious award. It recognises a student who has made an incredible contribution to the Boarding community.

Br J G Hodda Memorial Award for Leadership and Diligence

Br James Gerald Hodda arrived at Nudgee College in 1962 as the 22nd Headmaster. His leadership brought about several improvements, including a modern telephone system, dressing rooms under the grandstand, fresh coats of paint and plumbing enhancements. The most significant, however, was a million-pound project that delivered a complete senior school, accommodation, classrooms and science laboratories. In terms of his greatest achievement, his successor, Br Brian Boulton, said he attributed this to “the good behaviour and improved manners of the boys” during his tenure.

This award is presented to the Student Leadership Team who have led through service, participation and commitment to the life of the College.

W Carlton-Smith Memorial Award for Leadership, Study and Co-curricular

William Carlton-Smith was a student at Nudgee College from 1916 to 1917, who pursued a career as an optometrist post-school. He was a Fellow of the Worshipful Guild of Spectacle Makers (London) and a Fellow of the British Optical Association (London). In 1922 and 1923, he was the amateur middleweight boxing champion of Queensland. William was the first in a long line of Carlton-Smiths to attend the College. William’s great-grandson Freddie Carlton-Smith was the College Captain in 2017, exactly 100 years after his great-grandfather was at Nudgee College. 

This award is presented to a Year 12 Student who best fulfils the following criteria:

  • Leadership: Commitment to actioning the College Mission (respect, commitment, justice, effort, cooperation and faith).
  • Study: Exemplary commitment, effort, cooperation and respect for Nudgee College's academic ideals.
  • Co-curricular: Exemplary commitment, respect, effort and cooperation within the College's Sport or Performing Arts programs.

Lawrie Cusack Signum Fidei Award for a Student who displays the qualities of our school motto ‘A Sign of Faith’

Nudgee College Old Boys’ Association (NCOBA) President. Secretary. Registrar. There are few men who could rival the late Lawrence ‘Lawrie’ Michael Cusack’s dedication and commitment to the NCOBA and the extended College community. Sadly, in June 2016, Lawrie passed away following a battle with cancer.

When he was a teenager, Lawrie was Nudgee College icon Jack Ross’ number one scribe, keeping records of names, addresses and telephone numbers in a book. After graduating from Nudgee College in 1950, Lawrie remained heavily involved in the community, helping out by marshalling at various sports, and attending the weekly Sunday masses. Lawrie remained connected to the College throughout his adult life, joining the NCOBA Executive Committee as its secretary in 1986, and performing the role of registrar.

This award recognises a Year 12 student who leads by example, and shows humility, strength of character and solidarity with the marginalised.

Sam Sciacca Memorial Award for Character and Citizenship

Sam Sciacca was an Old Boy of the College who sadly passed away in 1992 at the age of 19 from Ewing's Sarcoma. Sam attended the College in 1990 and 1991. His wonderful faith and acceptance exhibited during the painful time of his illness and the humble influence he had on those who surrounded him are celebrated and remembered by this award. His father, former Federal Labor MP Con Sciacca, was awarded an Order of Australia in 2006, which he dedicated to Sam.

This award is presented to a Year 12 student who demonstrates cooperation with and respect for staff and other students, effort towards academic pursuits, commitment to participation in sporting and cultural activities, and a clear understanding of right and wrong.