Senior School - Duke of Edinburgh

The Duke of Edinburgh Award was first introduced in 1956 in the United Kingdom by The Duke of Edinburgh with the aim to motivate boys between the ages of 15 to 18 to become involved in a balanced program of voluntary self-development activities, to take them through the potentially difficult period between adolescence and adulthood.

Since then the program has developed and grown internationally and is now open to all youth between the ages of 14 to 25 in over 143 countries.

The Duke of Edinburgh program was established at Shellharbour Anglican College in 2009 with a foundation group of 12 eager Year 9 students. Since then, the program has grown each year and in 2012 our first group of Gold Awardees was recognised by the NSW Department of Sport & Communities. There are now over 70 students participating across Years 9, 10 and 11.

In order to qualify for an Award, each participant is required to devise his or her own diverse program, consisting of at least one hour per week of sport, skill and community service, in addition to this, participants need to successfully complete two overnight expeditions in wilderness areas.

Shellharbour Duke of Edinburgh hikes have included expeditions to:

  • Royal National Park
  • Heathcote National Park
  • Blue Mountains National Park
  • Brisbane Waters National Park
  • Ku Ring Gai Chase National Park
  • Warrumbungles National Park
  • Kosciuzko National Park
  • Barren Grounds
  • Routeburn and Kepler Tracks in New Zealand and
  • Samoa.

At Gold level only, students are required to complete a Residential Project of at least 5 days and since 2011 participants have visited the NSW town of Gilgandra to assist with the Bush Church Aid program.  Upon completing the Award, students demonstrate an increased knowledge and understanding of the world around them. They are resilient, confident in overcoming challenges, they understand the importance of teamwork and are highly employable.

What's it about for the participants?

Physical Recreation: Break a sweat to improve your physical fitness. This could be thorough a team sport, individual pursuit, or simply getting out there and working up a sweat.

Skill: Unleash your talents and abilities. Anything from refereering, DJing, learning a musical instrument, or jewellery making.

Volunteering: Connect with your community and realise your passions. Any area of interest in your community.

Adventurous Journey: Discover your sense of adventure and bond with your mates. A journey into an unfamiliar environment with a group. Bushwalking, canoeing, cycling and urban adventure.

Residential Project: Broaden your horizons and open your eyes to the world, in Australia or anywhere in the world, its only limited by your imagination.

If you would like further information, please speak to Mr Nathan Alterator Coordinator of Duke of Edinburgh Program or visit the Duke of Edinburgh website: 

Applications for the Bronze program occur at the beginning of Term 4 of Year 8, at the end of Year 9 and Year 10 for Silver and Gold respectively.

Duke of Edinbugh Photo Gallery link

If you are wondering what it would be like to participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Program, read the attached "Reflections of the Duke of Edinburgh Program" article.  This was a speech given by a 2016 Gold Duke of Ed Student at the recent Gold Duke of Edinburgh Review Evening.  It is humbling in its honesty and a great preview of what you can expect...or not expect to learn from the Program.