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News & Events
Lasting connections with Japan - 02 September 2014

Lourdes Hill College was recently delighted to welcome back its first ever Japanese exchange student, Mutsumi “Mimi” Tashiro (nee Nakao) for a visit.

It was 36 years ago when Mimi, who was a student from Seiwa College in Sasebo, attended Lourdes Hill for the 1978 academic year, from January until graduation.

Mimi stayed with three host families during her year in Brisbane and she remembers the experience very fondly. She loved her time here and she says that she was hardly homesick at all. She believes that this time away from her family made her a little more independent and resilient.

Mimi visits Brisbane regularly because her daughter is currently studying at The University of Queensland. Mimi recalls thinking how large Australian houses were and how much open space there is. She remembers that Sister Leonie D’Arcy was the Principal at that time and was very kind to her. Sister Leonie went out of her way to make sure that Mimi was happy and enjoyed the exchange. Mimi was the only exchange student who came to Brisbane as most of the other Japanese girls stayed in Sydney attending other Good Samaritan secondary schools.

During her visit, Mimi was able to catch up with Ms Peita Ward (nee Hanley) who was also a senior student in 1978. They shared many laughs and memories of their year at Lourdes Hill together.

Mimi has been back to Lourdes Hill once before in 2007 when she spoke at Assembly about her time here.