ACU School Leavers Program

The ACU School Leavers Program resumes this year for the first time since the pandemic. The program will run from 18 November to 10 December, based at ACU's Rome Campus for two weeks, followed by a week in London. 

Twenty students from Sydney Catholic Schools and five students from Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools will join the program this year, accompanied by teachers from Sydney, Melbourne and Young. More information about the program and its content can be found here. 

Download program (PDF, 1.13MB)

The ACU School Leavers Program is a formation program for Catholic school students who have just completed their HSC exams and have a demonstrated record of leadership and service. It provides an immersion experience in the Catholic tradition and Western civilisation, based in Rome and London. The object of the program is to deepen young leaders’ understanding of how powerfully Christianity, politics and culture have shaped both the Western world and our own diverse, complex, and secular society of today, as a foundation for their own leadership and service after school.

The program runs for three weeks; two weeks in Rome and one week in London. It comprises a structured series of short readings from key historical texts, lectures and discussions, and guided visits to sites in and around Rome and London that are significant to the story of the Catholic faith and the development of Western culture and society.

The program explores themes such as the way Christianity transformed the world of ancient Rome; the role of the monasteries in keeping learning and education alive after the fall of Rome; the impact of Christian ideas and art during the Renaissance; the Reformation and the conflicts over religion which followed from it; the ways in which religion and politics have been entangled in Western history; changing ideas of politics, religion and society coming out of the Enlightenment and the French Revolution; the influence of Christianity in shaping Western ideas of law and parliamentary democracy; and Catholic social teaching and the modern papacy up to Pope Francis.

The ACU School Leavers Program has been running annually since 2018 in collaboration with Sydney Catholic Schools, and with Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools since 2022

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