On Friday 9 September, students were fortunate to meet old scholar, Mr Simon Arkell (WDK 1983), a two-time Olympian and Commonwealth Games Champion, who has broken nine Australian and four Commonwealth records, has been recognised as Australian Athlete of the Year and has been inducted into the Australian Athletics Hall of Fame. As a hi-tech entrepreneur and investor with a focus on AI and healthcare technology and co-founder of seven venture backed companies, including Deep Lens, Predixion Software and Versifi, which together raised over $100M in venture backing, Mr Arkell was able to share many inspiring stories about the benefit of hard work in sport and business.
Mr Arkell’s message resonated with the students, as he discussed his international experience in study, sports and business. Students were able to ask questions about his experience as a student at St Peter’s College, as an Olympic athlete, as a university student in the United States and as an entrepreneur in hi-tech industries. Many students were moved by his message that luck is when preparedness meets opportunity. Students noted that this statement provided them with extra motivation and inspiration to work hard and take advantage of opportunities as they arise. Mr Arkell also had students thinking about using entrepreneurship skills in all areas, not just the typical business arenas. Students were grateful and truly inspired by his advice to find what they are passionate about; those moments when time flies by and they are willing to put in extra effort without it feeling like work.