The James (Jim) Wastell (OW1938) Bursary was established in memory of Jim Wastell to honour his ability as a musician, enthusiasm as an educator and devotion to ‘The Best School of All’ over some 55 years.
In 1939, Jim entered the University of Melbourne and Queen’s College as the holder of the Sidney Myer Music Scholarship. In 1945, upon graduation and following war-service, he joined the College as Assistant Director of Music, becoming Director of Music at the Glen Waverley Campus (then Syndal) when the Junior School was opened in 1966 until his retirement in 1982.
Despite limited facilities, his influence on music at Wesley was profound. He gave all students the opportunity to play an instrument and inspired a new generation in the rich tradition of Wesley school songs. But it was the chapel at Glen Waverley and its organ that was at the centre of Jim’s musical heart. Many remember him seated at the organ, playing with one hand, conducting with the other - no easy task because the old organ had a one-minute delay between the playing of the keys and the sound from the pipes.
The Wastell Strings ensemble at Glen Waverley, named in his honour, and the ‘Wesley College Hymn,’ with music penned by Jim Wastell, ensures his legacy lives on.