Federal Member for Bonner Ross Vasta has congratulated a local student who was named a Queensland Winner in a prestigious national history competition that explored the Anzac spirit.

Shanelle Van Der Merwe from Year 10 at Citipointe Christian College was one of eight young Australians awarded the Simpson Prize, which encourages participants to explore the significance of the Anzac experience and what it has meant for Australia.

She has won a trip to Europe to visit places of wartime significance in London, France and Belgium.

Shanelle’s essay detailed the significant military, political and economic victories in Australia from the year 1918, and the price that Australian troops and families paid as a result of war and whether the victories were worth the cost.

Mr Vasta said it is important the next generation of Australians reflect on our wartime experiences.

“I congratulate every student in Bonner who entered the Simpson Prize and gained a better understanding of the Anzac tradition and its importance to our national identity.”

The Simpson Prize received 1,230 entries this year from students in years 9 and 10.

The Australian Government has supported the Simpson Prize since 1998. For more information on the Simpson Prize, visit