South Australian Government News Release: Eight South Australian students awarded ANZAC Spirit School Prize, study tour of Vietnam by Susan Close, 15 July 2016.

The news release has been reproduced below.

Eight South Australian students have been awarded the 2016 Premier’s ANZAC Spirit School Prize, and will embark on a study tour of Vietnam in October to learn about the experiences of Australian soldiers and nurses who served in the Vietnam War.

South Australian Year 9 and 10 students were eligible to enter the annual competition, which required them to research a South Australian soldier or nurse who served in World War I.

In Vietnam, the students will participate in commemoration events and a variety of learning experiences as they travel from Ho Chi Min City to Hanoi. They will also undertake further research on a soldier or nurse who served in Vietnam (1962-1975).

The recipients of the 2016 Premier’s ANZAC Spirit School Prize are:

  1. Deklan Soeroes – Le Fevre High School
  2. Samual Doering – Faith Lutheran School
  3. Bridgette Walmesley-Cotham – Loxton High School
  4. Tayla Willson – Kangaroo Island Education Centre
  5. Charlotte Matthias – Loreto College
  6. Maddisen Kammermann – Lock Area School
  7. Talia Goodliffe – Aberfoyle Park High School
  8. Sophie Hodges – Nuriootpa High School


The students’ essays are available to read on South Australia’s dedicated Anzac Centenary website:

The Premier’s ANZAC Spirit School Prize is in its 10th year and has seen 76 students travel to the battlefields of the Western Front and Gallipoli, Korea and Singapore. Since its inception in 2007, more than 3,000 Year 9 and 10 students have participated.

RSL-SA President Brigadier Tim Hanna will join Lock Area School history teacher Ms Cendall Slattery and prize manager Mr Malcom McInerney in accompanying the students on the trip.

Quotes attributable to Education Minister Susan Close

This trip is certainly a once-in-a-lifetime educational experience in which students can gain deep respect and understanding for the men and women who served our country.

I am pleased that so many students were interested in spending their time researching and learning about our war veterans, and I applaud all who entered this year’s competition.

I hope to meet with the students upon their return, and hear firsthand their insights into both our wartime history and our continued friendship with Vietnam.

Quotes attributable to Veterans’ Affairs Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith

We are happy to be working with the RSL once again to deliver this life-changing experience for young South Australians who value our rich history of military service.

The Premier’s ANZAC Spirit School Prize will allow this group to discover why the Vietnam War continues to be such a powerful force.

They will gain a greater understanding of the sacrifices these young South Australians made more than 50 years ago, many who were not much older than they themselves are now.

Quote attributable to President RSL-SA, Brigadier Tim Hanna

The RSL is proud to once again work with the State Government to deliver this life changing experience for the youth of South Australia.

The war in Vietnam ended many decades ago but the feelings of many Australians, whether they served overseas, observed from afar or lost loved ones, remains very strong.

The Premier’s ANZAC Spirit School Prize will allow this group of young men and women to learn what impact the Vietnam War had on the Vietnamese, and on the lives of so many Australians who fought there.

Related News

  • In Australia, 18 August is recognised as Vietnam Veterans’ Day. This year, 18 August will also mark the 50th Anniversary of Long Tan. A memorial service will be held at the Long Tan Cross on this day. There will also be several supporting activities. For more information, click here.
  • The South Australian Premier, Governor and Minister for Veteran Affairs attended two Auscham functions in June 2016. For further information, click here.



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