Award winner Chloe with Leigh’s parents, Debbie and Frank Barnier
The Leigh Barnier Spirit of the Games Award recognises a current student or graduate of Macquarie who has displayed an unselfish level of commitment to the uni, and an unwavering demonstration of sportsmanship and Esprit de Corp in their sporting and academic pursuits.
Leigh Barnier was a Macquarie atmospheric science student and swimming sports scholarship holder who was tragically killed in a skiing accident in Canada in January 2008. Leigh loved Macquarie, and he left an indelible mark on it. This award is in remembrance of that passion.
This year’s winner of the Leigh Barnier award, Chloe, is a psychology (honours) student in her final year of study and has been a sport scholar since 2012, competing in sport aerobics at a national level.
Chloe has demonstrated her pride in representing and supporting Macquarie, and is an exceptional student and athlete who lives and breathes the uni. She is always full of energy and always willing to get involved, making herself available for countless activities.
During this year’s Blues Awards, Chloe gave a moving speech about her honourable win.
“Although I never had the privilege of meeting Leigh, the fact that his legacy still lives on today is a testament to his unwavering dedication to every aspect of his life, whether it be his studies, his swimming career or the relationships with those closest to him.
When I first learned I was nominated for this award, I was told that it was given to a student who is passionate about the university and whose character represents the core values of the university, being scholarship, integrity and empowerment. To me, being recognised as someone who displays all of these qualities is truly humbling.
Ever since I can remember I have had a strong passion for learning, a real curiosity towards life and a need to constantly challenge myself both physically and mentally through my sport. As I have grown up, that passion has not faded. One thing was always clear in my mind, and that was my desire to achieve the numerous goals I set for myself.
In the past five years of my time at Macquarie, I have learned several formulas, theories and models to do with psychology and how humans interact. But nothing compares to the values and life lessons I have learned by being a student at this university. Like Leigh, I tend to throw myself wholeheartedly into any opportunity which presents itself.
Whilst my five years of university will be complete in five days’ time, the memories and skills I have learned along the way will last a lifetime.”
Congrats on the win, Chloe, and thanks for the inspiring words!