Memories for a Lifetime: Bruce House Annual Dinner

November 02, 2022 at 7:00 PM

On a night that never ends without a few tears, the annual Bruce House Dinner for the Class of 2022 was no different. The high school experience for the boarders at Bruce House is filled with trials and joys that differ slightly from their day school peers. However, if the friendships on display, laughter shared over good food, and tearful remembrance of the years spent at Saint Kentigern College are anything to go by, it is safe to say Bruce House is an experience well worth it.

Bruce House Head Boy Kiyaan Manukonga and Bruce House boarders opened the night with a haka before all in attendance sat down to a delicious roast meal by the incredible house cooks. They have been pillars for the boarding staff and have made endless meals filled with love for the boarders. The leavers were joined for the evening by their loved ones, parents and siblings. There is no better feeling than a warm meal on an overcast evening with family and friends, or in the student’s case, friends who have become family. An array of desserts followed the dinner, including pudding, cupcakes, and parfaits.

After bellies were filled, the room sat to enjoy some entertaining speeches, acknowledgement of Year 13 leavers, and awards for high achievers throughout the year. Director of Boarding, Mr Martin Piaggi, began the night by thanking those who have contributed significantly to the Year 13 students’ time in Bruce House. Mr Piaggi said, “So many people have given time, a listening ear, meals, and love to all the boarding students that it would be amiss not to mention them. A huge thank you to the duty team Mr Tony Arrol, Mr Jonathan Batchelar, Mr Shayne Mikaere, Mr Geoff Perry, Miss Katie Gordon, Miss Rosie Butler, Miss Casey Park, and Miss Biliana Kostova; to Mrs Bridget Anitelea, the Head of Girls’ Boarding; to Mr Duncan McQueen and the Trust Board for consistently supporting the improvements to Bruce House; and finally, to the student leadership team. Head Boy Kiyaan Manukonga and Head Girl Sophie Fieldman have led the students with grace and integrity throughout the year, alongside their Deputies Xavi Taele and Katherine Cao and the leadership team Rafael Tapusoa and Martin Huang.” 

Mrs Bridget Anitelea was next to address the dining hall, giving a heartfelt speech that marked her 20th anniversary at Saint Kentigern College. Like the leavers, she reflected on all the people who impacted her time at the school. She emphasised the incredible privilege it is to be ‘house mum’ and thanked each of the leavers for their influence. Following her speech, the room enjoyed a video packed with photo memories of key highlights from the year. The laughter echoing through the dining hall was undoubtedly a reflection of the genuine joy of many nights spent together.

The video launched perfectly into a recap of the year’s highlights given by Bruce House’s Head Prefects Kiyaan and Sophie. From hours of House Music practice to Clash of the Villas and food box packing, there wasn’t a dull moment all year! Sophie and Kiyaan then individually addressed the room, reflecting on personal moments of triumph and celebration. For Sophie, moving from Keri Keri to Auckland was undoubtedly a shift that required lots of adjustment. However, her kindness, gentle nature and genuine care for her fellow Bruce House students have remained throughout her years. Kiyaan was the only original boy boarder from his cohort, now joined by many who came a little later. As he talked, two things were clear. His immense impact on the boys and deep gratitude for all who have cared for him during his five years.

Every year, awards are given to those who have excelled in various aspects of boarding and school life. The recipients are listed below 

MacFarlan Cup for Head Boy:                                                 Kiyaan Manukonga

MacFarlan Cup for Head Girl:                                                     Sophie Fieldman

Morgan Cup for Year 11 Academic Achievement:                  Terri Sim

McGuiness Cup for Year 13 Academic Honours:                    Harry Chen

Bruce House Cup for Top All-round Boy:                                 Rafael Tapusoa

Norma Cowie Cup for Top All-round Girl:                                Katherine Cao

Marcroft Cup for Bruce House Sportsperson of the Year:    Xavi Taele


We’d like to congratulate all winners for their effort, excellence, and rigor.

The last matter to attend to was the announcement of next year’s prefects. We look forward to seeing the mark our Bruce House Head Boy Zae Mangu, Head Girl Jacquie Masamba Hunter, with Deputies Hwi Chang, Becca Clements, and Oliver Jewell will make in 2023.


Well done to all the Year 13 leavers. You have left Bruce House better than you found it, a legacy that we know will be continued in the coming years.

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