Charting a new course for the Macquarie College Foundation

Macquarie College Foundation - Ross Howard

The Hunter Adventist Education Foundation Limited was established in 1990, creating a solid foundation for Christian education in the region.  In 1994, the Foundation was renamed the Macquarie College Foundation, coinciding with the relocation of the College from Hamilton to its present site on Lake Road Wallsend.

For the past 28 years, the Foundation has worked discretely supporting the maintenance and development of facilities, providing scholarships, bursaries and awards, and providing education resources to achieve the philosophy and vision of the College.

Macquarie College Foundation - Ross HowardMr Ross Howard become a Director of the Foundation in 2017.  As Chair of the Committee, Ross is overseeing a new, purposeful approach by the Foundation to connect with the community by raising awareness about giving programs, investing in facilities, and building on the Foundation’s strong, financial foundations developed over many years.

Recently Ross attended the Macquarie College PTA AGM, taking the opportunity to briefly introduce himself and share information about the exciting Foundation projects coming in 2018.  “I enjoyed this opportunity to meet another group of enthusiastic volunteers who are actively community building and supporting College Staff.  It was tremendous to see the depth of volunteer support in action at the beginning of 2018.”

Priority projects for the Foundation include a Constitutional review and launching a Foundation Membership Drive, the conceptualisation of a Macquarie College Alumni Program, and finally, supporting Stage 3 of the Sport & Recreation Centre through an important fundraising campaign.

Speaking with Ross about his role as Chair, it was clear to see that his head and heart are both heavily invested in Macquarie College.  Ross has seen all four children complete their schooling at Macquarie College (some commencing in Hamilton and enjoying the move to Wallsend), with his youngest graduating Year 12 in 2005.  Now, two grandchildren are attending the school.

“Macquarie College is special to me because of what it offers young people – a good education in every sense.  Plus, it offers answers to the two big questions that, sooner or later, we all ask; “Why am i here?” and “Where am I going?”.

“The Foundation has been in a holding pattern for a long while and I am keen to see it reactivated, because of its obvious potential to support and promote the wellbeing of the College and its students.”

“Before the Sport & Recreation Centre was built (and as one who isn’t involved in the day to day operations of the College), I didn’t see it as a project that was particularly critical to the development of the campus. However, since it was finished, I’ve been taken aback by the number of comments from students and staff about what a great addition it is to the campus, and that’s what really counts.”

The Sport & Recreation Centre features two international standard basketball courts and mixed-use playing zones, two new classrooms and changerooms, and new offices which bring all Junior and Senior Sport Staff into the one location increasing collaboration, resource-sharing and team culture.  Over 2,100 scheduled classes will be delivered in the Centre during 2018 alone. 

Another two classrooms, a fitness and recreation zone, a cafe, and a formal reception foyer with amenities are included in Stage 3 construction, which has everyone looking keenly to the future of this development and the role the Foundation will play in garnering community support to get these walls up as quickly as possible.