Christine Johnson’s Five Soldiers featured in Remembrance Documentary by Monash Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
As the centenary of the armistice of World War One approached, the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences sought to explore and better understand the contributions to the national war effort of pharmacy students from its predecessor institution, the Melbourne College of Pharmacy/the Victorian College of Pharmacy, which merged with Monash University in 1992. Through extensive historical research, undertaken by Andrew McIntosh and his team from the Faculty, 30 pharmacy students were identified as having paused their studies to enlist in the medical corps and infantry. Four of these students, namely Alan Couve, Eric Bisset, Gordon Jewkes and Malcolm Jones, were killed in action.
Monash University conferred posthumous B Pharm (Honours) degrees in the name of each student soldier. The testamurs of these posthumous degrees were presented to a member of each student’s family during a bespoke graduation ceremony conducted in Cossar Hall on 30 April 2019. The service and contributions of a fifth student, Frank Cahir, was also recognised during this ceremony by the award of a Certificate of Recognition and Appreciation. This project provided a further opportunity to explore the historical links between the former Victorian College of Pharmacy and Sir John Monash.
The Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Monash University commissioned artist Christine Johnson to honour five pharmacy students, all of whom enlisted to serve their country in World War I and whose lives were tragically cut short.