Bursary recipient - how your donation can help

Mon, January 09, 2017

Sam was the recipient of a Br Mark May Bursary and is grateful for the opportunities Marist and the Bursary provided to him.


How long did you attend Marist?   

Sam started at Marist in Year 4, which he says now feels like a long time ago, commenting “you start to think of it as family”.

Sam feels his teachers at Marist and friends have helped create the person he is today. “The teachers have given tips on how to be successful, I’ve learnt how to respect myself as well as others, and to live life the ‘right’ way. Friends are there your whole life and at Marist, they turn into ‘Brothers’. You see them outside school as you would your own brothers, and they make you happy.”

Sam is the youngest in the Fotu family. He has one sister and three older brothers who went through Marist.

What are the things you enjoyed most about your time at the College?

Sam enjoyed the variety of practical subjects at the College, such as Construction, Art, Year 8 Metalwork and cooking.

In Year 12, Sam studied Construction Pathways, Hospitality, General Maths, English, Religious Education and Physical Education.

Sam was involved in the 2016 Foundation Marist Mothers’ and Grandmothers’ Afternoon Tea through his Hospitality class as a waiter. Sam enjoyed the chance for hands-on experience and meeting some of the Marist mothers.

Sam enjoyed being a member of McMahon House and had two different House Group Leaders since Year 7 – Mr Grealish and Mr Ceruti. Sam liked that there were students from Years 7-12 in his House Group. As a Year 12 member, he tried to mentor the younger students (including two of his cousins). Sam’s older brother Loia and another Senior helped to teach Sam the ‘right’ way when has was in Year 7 and encouraged him to be involved in House activities. 

Sam was the 2016 McMahon House Sports Captain. In this role he spoke to the Year 7 and 8 students to encourage their involvement in various House and sporting activities with the goal of winning the Champagnat Cup. Sam formed close friendships with the other McMahon House Captains and with other Year 12s within the House. Sam’s older brothers were also in McMahon House.

In Co-Curricular, Sam was involved with DanceFest for five years since Year 7. “DanceFest tells different kinds of stories and dancing makes me feel free and happy and it is a way to express how you’re feeling to others. DanceFest also gives you the opportunity to show others how much you enjoy dancing”. Sam’s brother Loia started DanceFest again in 2010 and it was something that Sam aspired to do when he started Year 7.  

Sam started playing rugby at Marist in Year 4, and was part of the First XV during Year 11. Sam started playing rugby when he was six and loves it. Unfortunately Sam was unable to play rugby for the College during Year 12 due to eligibility requirements. His whole family has been involved with the sport for as long as he remembers. Sam likes rugby as it keeps him fit and helps “release his stress and inner angst through its physicality. It also creates mates for the future”, with most of his good mates originating through rugby. 

What are you planning to do in 2017/ in the future?

Sam will be heading into a ‘new world of life outside Marist’ in 2017 and is undertaking labouring on a construction site. He then hopes to travel during the European summer. London, Croatia and Germany are on his wish list. The labouring could include either residential or commercial work.

After travelling, Sam hopes to start a carpentry apprenticeship. Sam would like to follow in the footsteps of his oldest brother Sio and in the longer term, be able to build his own house. He loves building things and already connects with those who work in this field. It’s also something Sam feels he learns quickly and this adds to his enjoyment. Sam would like to remain in Canberra as the schools are ‘pretty good’.

What does ‘Being Marist’ mean to you?

For Sam “Being Marist means being yourself, being more confident with what you want to show the world, having the Catholic Faith, and being involved in service groups.”

Sam feels the Marcellin Champagnat story has taught him to reach out and help the less privileged and to be involved with various charities.

If a parent was thinking of sending their son to Marist, what advice might you give?

Sam would most definitely recommend that parents consider Marist as a place to send their son. Sam’s advice is to get involved as much as possible and make as many friends as you can. He also recommends you enjoy your life at Marist and all it has to offer.

Sam is going to miss the ‘brotherhood’.

Please click here for information on how you can assist other students like Sam receive a Marist education.