Greek language students celebrated at the Dionysios Solomos Awards

Young students who excelled in Modern and Classical Greek in the NSW Higher School Certificate (HSC) were recognised at the annual Dionysios Solomos Awards on Sunday, February 26.

High achievers from the Greek Afternoon and Saturday schools of the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW (GOCNSW) were also celebrated on the day.

The awards were organised by GOCNSW as part of the Greek Festival of Sydney, and they were held at the University of Sydney’s (USYD) Maclaurin Hall at 4pm.

On the day, over 150 people were in attendance including the students, their proud families and official guests. These officials included the Consul General of Greece in Sydney, Ioannis Mallikourtis; the President of GOCNSW, Harry Danalis; the Chair of the Greek Festival of Sydney, Nia Karteris; the Sir Nicholas Laurantus Chair in Modern Greek and Byzantine Studies at USYD, Professor Vrasidas Karalis; and Associate Professor of Modern Greek at USYD, Dr Anthony Dracopoulos; among many others.

Master of Ceremonies, Vicki Tomaras, kicked off the award proceedings with a small welcome, followed by the National Anthems of Greece and Australia.

A number of speeches were then given by Mr Danalis, Mr Mallikourtis and Professor Karalis. All three congratulated the students on their successes and stressed the importance of maintaining their Greek language skills.

After these speeches, students were presented with awards in the following categories: HSC Awards for Modern Greek Beginners, Modern Greek Continuers, Modern Greek Extension, Classical Greek Continuers and Classical Greek Extension, as well as the Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Modern Greek and the GOCNSW Greek Afternoon Schools’ Outstanding Achievement Awards.

One student, Iro Anatoli Mouratidou from the Secondary College of Languages Kogarah Campus, won a HSC Award for Modern Greek Extension and told The Greek Herald after the event she “felt great” to be recognised.

“I came from Greece to Australia so it’s important in such a multicultural country to maintain the Greek language and promote it in a big way because Greece is the basis of English,” Iro said.

Thomas Henderson from Sydney Grammar School won a HSC Award for Classical Greek Continuers and he also told The Greek Herald it “felt amazing the Greek community could come together and honour not just Modern Greek but Classical Greek.”

“I’m not of Greek background but I was just really lucky to be able to take Classical Greek at school and I really enjoyed it,” Thomas added.

“I chose Classical Greek because we were going to study Homer and Plato and Aristocles. Plato in particular, it’s important to study philosophy like that cause it’s the basis of how our society is run today.”

All Award Winners:

HSC Modern Greek – Beginners:

1st – Anna-Maria Parissis (NSW School of Languages); 3rd – Elefteria Houliaras (NSW School of Languages), Anastasia Karatasoulis (NSW School of Languages), Paris Paranomos (NSW School of Languages), Peta Pyrgiotis (NSW School of Languages), Evangelos Kapsis (NSW School of Languages).

HSC Modern Greek – Continuers:

1st – Anargyros Efthymiou Kallos (Secondary College of Languages Ashfield Boys Campus); 2nd – Vasiliki Karra (NSW School of Languages); 3rd – Panayiota Nakis Gkourlias (Blakehurst High School), Ioannis Pyrgakis (All Saints Grammar), John Ioannis Koumoulas (NSW School of Languages), Maria Varvaressos (All Saints Grammar), Georgina Brakoulias (Secondary College of Languages Hills Sports High School Campus), Anna Kalogianni (NSW School of Languages), Maria Kakali (Secondary College of Languages Ashfield Campus).

HSC Modern Greek – Extension:

1st – Anargyros Efthymiou Kallos (Secondary College of Languages Ashfield Boys Campus); 3rd – Iro Anatoli Mouratidou (Secondary College of Languages Kogarah Campus), Maria Kakali (Secondary College of Languages Ashfield Campus), Orestis Lascaris (St Spyridon College), Nikoletta Lafogiannis (St Euphemia College), Christos Triantafyllou (St Euphemia College).

HSC Classical Greek – Continuers:

1st – Thomas Henderson (Sydney Grammar School); 2nd – Charles Andrew Henry (Saint Ignatius’ College), Jai Kimatrai (Sydney Grammar School).

HSC Classical Greek – Extension:

1st – Thomas Henderson (Sydney Grammar School), Charles Andrew Henry (Saint Ignatius’ College).

Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Modern Greek (Commended):

  • Nicholas Ceic-Miralis – Clemton Park Saturday.
  • Lia Pappas – Beverly Hills North Public School.           
  • Alma Eliopoulos – Summer Hill Public School.                     
  • Anya Valsamis – Connells Point Public School              
  • Ekaterini Bozatzis – Panania Public School.

Minister’s Awards for Excellence in Modern Greek (Highly Commended):

  • Nefeli Iliopoulou – Clemton Park Saturday High School.

GOCNSW Outstanding Achievement Awards:

  • Eleni Frangulis – Connells Point Public School (PS).
  • Ariana Medanic – Connells Point PS.                
  • Penelope Tzouramanis – Connells Point PS.
  • James Moisidis – Clemton Park PS.
  • Elefteria Gartzonis – Clemton Park PS.
  • Harris Vasilopoulos – Clemton Park PS.
  • Petria Binios – Clemton Park PS.
  • Poppy Mavrakis – Clemton Park High School.
  • Jamie Polatoglou – Clemton Park Saturday School.
  • Fotini Apostolidis – Clemton Park Saturday School.
  • Costantino Lambropoulos – Clemton Park Saturday School.
  • Zoe Rorris – Summer Hill PS.
  • Matthew Englezos-Paton – Summer Hill PS.
  • Zachariah Kasadelis – Panania PS.
  • Dimitrios Alavanos – Beverly Hills North PS.
  • Ava Voulgaropoulos – Wilkins PS.


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