Lyndale Secondary College Alumni News

As we look to the future for new and innovative teaching and learning practices we must also pay homage to the past. It is with this in mind that the Lyndale Secondary College Alumni Association will be formed in order to establish important links for both students and staff who have been associated with the College in previous years. We encourage former students to continue their involvement with the college through extension programs, guest appearances, reunions, fundraisers and tutoring programs.


Steven Heaton

London, 16th October 2017 // PhD researcher and ex-Lyndale student Steven Heaton has beaten over one thousand applicants from around the world to win the Sparrho Early Career Researcher Prize. This international prize recognises a researcher’s passion for their field and excellence in the communication of their ground-breaking scientific research.

Steven, who grew up in Dandenong, works at Monash University studying the mechanisms that cause cells to become infected. His work explores how cells ‘know’ they have become infected, and how they ‘choose’ their immune response out of hundreds of possible options.

“A cell has hundreds of thousands of proteins, whereas a virus only has about 12 or 10 proteins,” he explains. His research aims to discover how “these very small numbers of proteins” are able to manipulate and shut down the host cell in order to allow the virus itself to replicate.

Research in this area aims to inform the design of more effective antiviral therapies, not only for viral infections but also for inflammatory diseases and some types of cancer. “By targeting these mechanisms, we are producing hundreds of marketable treatments,” Steven says.

Speaking about the path that led him into his field of research, Steven described how he became interested in immunology during his undergraduate degree at Monash. “I wanted to understand the immune system and how infection takes place and how we can design therapies against it,” he says. His ultimate career goal is to discover “not just individual proteins, but how entire [immune] pathways interact with each other.”

The monthly Sparrho Early Career Researcher Prize is awarded to two researchers who have curated the highest quality ‘pinboard’, a collection of research papers accompanied by a concise, non-technical summary, about their research field on Sparrho’s online platform. Steven stood out from the crowd for his pinboard’s skilful and dynamic communication of complex science research. His full submission can be viewed here:

Steven wins a AUD $850 bursary to attend and speak at the Consortium of Biological Sciences (ConBio2017), in Kobe, Japan, in December 2017. “This conference is a really significant opportunity for me because I would actually like to take my career and my research overseas, in particular to go to Japan,” he says. “The way they do science [and] the cultural significance of that country in science are things I’ve completely fallen for.”

Dr. Vivian Chan, chair of the judging panel and CEO of Sparrho, said: “Steve impressed us with his passion for communicating his research, the importance of his work in understanding what happens when cells become infected by viruses, and his aspirations to develop broad-spectrum therapeutics that target multiple viruses. Our Early Career Researcher Prize was set up to help rising stars like Steve gain global recognition and also travel to conferences to experience different research cultures and further disseminate their work. We’re delighted to support Steve’s presentation at ConBio2017 and wish every success in his future career.”


2017 Alumni Visits

Toby Mclean

Now proudly representing the number 16 of last year’s AFL Premiers, the Western Bulldogs, Toby Mclean began his journey here, at Lyndale Secondary College. He took time out of his busy sporting schedule to pay a visit back to his schooling days. We, the four college captains, had the pleasure of welcoming him and getting to know more about his life outside of school. He gave us insights on how he manages to balance his career commitments, alongside other aspects of his life.
Toby Mclean has had an outstanding career so far, having played a career-high of 15 games in 2016, and was a part of the Club’s AFL Premiership win in just his second season of senior football.

Prior to joining the Western Bulldogs, Mclean played for Narre Warren/Oakleigh Chargers (U18s) where he recorded multiple 30+ disposal games in his first year. During his first year in the TAC Cup, he averaged 22 disposals from 20 games and kicked 32 goals. The then 18-year-old was runner-up in the TAC Cup’s league best and fairest award and was named best on ground in the Oakleigh Chargers’ TAC Cup Grand Final win in September over the Calder Cannons.

Once again, we would like to thank Mr Mclean for coming to visit us and share his wisdom regarding the sporting industry and what it takes to succeed.


Hemming Hu

Professionally representing Australia in table tennis is ex Lyndale student Hemming Hu.

We were privileged to meet and talk to the professional athlete. He took time out of his busy schedule to return to Lyndale. With his high work ethic and encouraging wisdom, he informed us about the challenges and difficulties he faced, whilst showing us an insight into the aspects of his life. Having a professional athlete who attended Lyndale talk to us, it motivated and gave us a role model to look up to.

Beginning his journey right here at Lyndale he pursued his ambitions and competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics as part of the Australian team. He began playing table tennis at the age of seven in his family garage. With constant work and practice, he represented Australia at the 2014 Commonwealth Games where he finished 9th in both the men’s doubles, 17th in the mixed doubles and 5th in the team event.
The young athlete went on to qualify for the Rio 2016 team event alongside David Powell and Chris Yan.

We would thank Hemming Hu for returning to Lyndale and giving us an insight into his successful life.

Members are invited to contribute to the historical archives with photos, reports and a range of memorabilia. Members also assist former students in organising reunions. A number of functions are held each year providing opportunities to re-kindle old friendships and reminisce.