It has finished where it started for retiring Edmund Rice College principal Peter McGovern.
It was during his six years as a student at the independent high school that Mr McGovern dreamed of a career in education.
In 2012, some 37 years after finishing his student days at Edmund Rice College, Mr McGovern was appointed principal of his former school.
On Thursday he officially retired, bringing an end to a 41-year teaching career.
"It is bittersweet," Mr McGovern told the Mercury.
"I've loved every school I've been at. This one was quite personal because I came here as a kid. I went to Edmund Rice in the 1970s from 1970 to 1975.
"In 2012, 37 years later I came back to the place as a principal.
"It has been a bit emotional in that sense because I'm sort of finishing where I started."
Mr McGovern started teaching in Sydney but has spent the majority of his career in the Illawarra.
He taught at Keira High School from 1983-89 before becoming head English teacher and then deputy principal at Holy Spirit College in Bellambi.
Mr McGovern was then deputy principal at St Joseph's Catholic High School in Albion Park before holding the position of principal for nine years.
He has "enjoyed" working at all these schools, especially his last nine years at Edmund Rice College.
There were many highlights, especially while in charge at the West Wollongong-based boys' independent high school.
"The school has grown a fair bit since I started in 2012. It has grown by about 40 per cent.I think we will start next year with about 1080 students. When I came there was probably in the high 700s," Mr McGovern said.
Having hired about 70 per cent of his staff, Mr McGovern is also impressed with the good balance of younger teachers and "wise old heads".
"I've also really enjoyed being principal of an all boys' school," he said.
Mr McGovern though has especially enjoyed the freedom to spend a lot of money re-imagining the school in terms of making it quite contemporary with modern facilities.
"Our capital works over the last nine years was about $26-27 million," he said.
"We've opened new halls, new library, new arts centre, STEM rooms, new hospitality centre, new music rooms and an art precinct which was fairly significant.
"There has been a lot of development as well as work on our grounds. It has been fantastic to be able to do this," he said.
Lots of golf, bushwalking and spending time with his wife is in store for the soon to be 63-year-old. "I'm looking forward to this new chapter."
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