Innovation & Entrepreneurship

At St Mary’s, we value innovation and entrepreneurship in our student’s education. Our student-led, future-focused programs aim to foster enterprising behaviours and attitudes in our students early in their studies. With opportunities to participate in a range of activities and community partnership programs, students are encouraged to immerse themselves in exciting and engaging projects to empower, learn and achieve.

Our Innovation programs align with the Australian Curriculum and SACE to strengthen students’ skillsets and learning potential. Encompassing a range of social enterprises, innovation projects at St Mary's allow students to explore learning outside the boundaries of traditional subjects, developing authentic and real-world learning experiences. Below we have detailed a select number of successful and immersive programs our Innovation sector has offered our students.

The Digital Twin Project

The Digital Twin Project is a STEM-inspired project that has partnered St Mary’s with Digital Twinning Australia (DTA) for a pioneering program that introduces students to the digital workforce of the future. DTA is an Australian leader in Industry 4.0 based in Adelaide and Sydney. The business is female-owned, operated and founded, allowing our students a chance to observe STEM women in the workforce and advance their skillset with DTA’s learned guidance.

The partnership focuses on our students working closely with STEM to advance studies into solar energy systems, practise 3D modelling and conduct digital twinning on a virtual interface. The Digital Twin Project aims to offer a unique teaching tool for students to explore their skills in STEM and make their mark in reducing our carbon footprint.

The Climate Ready Schools Project

The Climate Ready Schools Project is an innovative project aimed at raising awareness in students to act on climate change through professional development sessions with educators. St Mary’s is one of a collection of schools taking part in the Climate Ready Communities project developed by the Natural Resource Management Education and Resilient South.

The program teaches students from Year 4 to 10 how to respond to climate change through the design thinking approach and an end-of-year group project. Students choose a local climate change dilemma, like wildfires and drought, suggest their own solution and design a diorama to ease the dilemma. The Climate Ready Schools Project has our students evaluate and consider the wider implications climate change has on our future.

The Grounds for Change Barista Project

The Grounds for Change Barista Project is a student-led project that combines small business and entrepreneurship skillsets with hospitality. Students from Years 7 to 12 gain enterprise, management and operation skills through the running of a small coffee shop business titled Grounds for Change (or G4C). Students are given the capability to integrate themselves into the community, absorbing real-world learning, including a refined knowledge of literacy, numeracy and critical and creative thinking skills. Through G4C, our students are educated on business finance, including income, profits and overheads.

Grounds for Change places its profits towards giving back to the community. G4C aids the Soup Kitchen initiative, supporting people out of work or those ineligible for JobKeeper. G4C also uses its profits for intercommunity training partnerships. Upholding St Mary’s immersion strategies, G4C partners with outside organisations to provide a 1:1 model (for every 1 St Mary’s student we train, 1 disadvantaged young person will be given access to free training at COTS).

G4C runs from 8:00 am to 8:40 am, Mondays to Fridays.

The Sponsor a Bee Program

The Sponsor a Bee Program is a student-driven enterprise where members of the cohort practise urban beekeeping, creating environmental education opportunities and beneficial outcomes for the wider community. The program is interlaced with our student’s Research Project assessment. Students even have access to a live stream Bee Cam to watch their bees live, work and rest. We give everyone the opportunity to support this program by sponsoring a bee for $5, $10 or $20 at Sponsor-a-Bee Program. Sponsorship grants emerging bee populations in the Adelaide Hills and Kangaroo Island support with hives and plant stock.

The Biodiversity and Garden Project

The Biodiversity and Garden Project is a welcome program for students from Reception to Year 6, to stretch their green thumb and learn about gardening, butterflies and frogs. We believe it is critical that our students engage in environmentally healthy and immersive activities to cultivate knowledge and expertise regarding the natural world. The Biodiversity and Garden Project incorporates the Butterfly Garden and Frog Pond Project, allowing students to explore biodiverse habitats, growth and actions of the selected fauna and flora.

Despite being a school located in the CBD, St Mary’s ensures our students receive environmentally sound interactions with nature. Students learn how to grow seeds, plant native botanicals, specifically Oxalis, and nurture butterfly species, including the rare Chequered Cooper Butterfly, located in the CBD. St Mary’s has built a small greenhouse using it to plant native botanicals and herbs to allow students to watch vegetation in separate stages of growth. The project has continued to help our students cultivate and refine a love and respect for nature.

Other Projects

Grow at Home Seed Project sees student mentors reaching out to local schools, teaching skills of gardening and propagation to allow seed stock to develop for our butterfly gardens.

Future Anything Entrepreneurial Programs allow our students to use design thinking principles to engage in social enterprises, gaining valuable experiences in problem-solving and development thinking.

Year 10 students also undertake immersive programs such as the $20Boss Entrepreneurship Program, where student-run businesses not only teach valuable problem-solving skills but build authentic entrepreneurial capacities.

We acknowledge that we live, learn and work on the traditional land of the Kaurna people.

We recognise and respect their cultural heritage, beliefs and relationship with the land.

We acknowledge that they are of continuing importance to the Kaurna people living today.


St Mary's College Ltd
253 Franklin Street Adelaide,
SA 5000

PHONE+61 8 8216 5700