In her role as Director, Whitefriars International Student Program from 2005 to 2018, Emilia Fields built on the foundations laid by the original Director and developed it into one of the leading programs in Australia.
Emilia developed a grasp of the many aspects of the program and was intimately involved in all areas — from promotion to enrolment, home-stay arrangements, English orientation classes, transfer to regular curriculum, ongoing pastoral care, graduation and post-school follow-up.
Emilia formed a wide network of colleagues across Australia and throughout Asia and beyond. She acquired an extensive appreciation of the complexities of the human considerations, as well as the regulations associated with the education of international students in Australia. She was widely sought out for her knowledge and advice and highly respected among Immigration Agents, International Student Promoters, Government Agencies, International Student Educators, families of students and home-stay providers. At Whitefriars College, a Catholic Boys’ Secondary College, owned and operated by the Carmelite Religious Order, Emilia was a committed adherent to and advocate of the spirit of the school. The College’s motto, Almae in Fide Parentis, translates as In the care of a loving mother. Emilia embodied and promoted the spirit of that motto. The College’s logo is Belong, Believe, Become. She worked tirelessly to ensure that the international students felt that they belonged in the College and broader community, that they believed in their potential and worked hard to realize it and that they became all that they were capable of being and doing for their own good and that of society at large.
I served as Principal of Whitefriars College throughout most of Emilia’s tenure and witness to the legacy she left.