For the past six years, I would never have believed that I would be ending my final year at Craighead as Head Girl. As the face of reality settles in, I realise my school days have nearly come to an end and, although I am unsure of what my next journey will look like, I am certain that Craighead has successfully educated me into thinking like a young adult.
When I first started Craighead as a naive, nervous Year 7 student, I was more than keen to try everything our school had to offer. Coming from a small country school just out of Ashburton, the range of opportunities was overwhelming, however I settled for what I am truly passionate about – music and sport. I am thankful to be on both of these committees as, after injuring my knee at the beginning of the 2020 Netball season, I was fortunate to still be able to preoccupy my time with the performing arts. This setback turned into an opportunity and taught me to develop a new perspective of what I can do, not what I can’t. This year I am very excited to continue the role of running the Student Volunteer Army alongside Deputy Head Girl, Rosie Paul. This organization allows Craighead students to gain a wider understanding of how the community works, and continue with our Craighead service values. 2021 will be a year full of uncertainties, but learning from 2020, we will cherish the time we do have at school and persevere with our theme of “Better together”. This theme’s intentions will hopefully bring the school closer together as a community and whānau with the help of our Year 13 students. No matter what the outcome of this year, I will do my best to lead our exceptional school with enthusiasm and positivity. We will ensure the time we do have left is well spent and I look forward to helping make 2021 an enjoyable year for all.
After four years at Craighead, I am extremely privileged to be able to give back to the school as Deputy Head Girl. My time here has flown by and I could not be more grateful for the friends I have made and teachers and coaches who have supported me along the way.
Starting as a Boarder in Year 9, knowing no-one, was a scary yet exciting experience. However, I quickly made friends and began to love it here. During my first few years, I enjoyed Netball, Basketball, Touch Rugby and Rowing. In my senior years, I played Football, social Touch and Beach Volleyball. My sports enabled me to make many friends in other year groups and go to tournaments in Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill and regattas in Twizel, Ashburton and Cambridge. School trips to Raincliff, Hanmer Springs and Mount Cook, including a flight around the mountain and glaciers, have also been unforgettable opportunities.
I have always loved and appreciated the community culture at Craighead with activities such as ‘banana’ on the lawn in summer and hostel theme nights being highlights. During my final year, I hope to embrace and grow Craighead’s community culture through the theme of ‘Better Together’. Working alongside Head Girl Charlotte Mulder and our passionate year group, we hope to make all girls feel welcome and at home here, because we can all achieve amazing things when we work together as one. Looking to the future, I hope to pursue my passion for learning, particularly in the Science and Maths departments and study Science or Health Science at Otago University. However, this year, my focus lies with completing Level 3 NCEA, service to the Boarding House and School including running the Student Volunteer Army with Charlotte, and simply enjoying my final year at Craighead.
I began my life at Craighead in 2015 as a nervous Year 7, fresh out of Waimataitai Primary School and terrified that I would never learn how to tie my tie. It has now been six years since I first walked into Ms Walker’s classroom and I have no idea where the time has gone, or unfortunately how to tie my tie confidently.
I am incredibly grateful for the unconditional support I have received from staff and other students, and I am fortunate to have the opportunity to return this service through my current position as Sacristan. With the support of Rev. Lucy Flatt, Deputy Sacristan Chanelle Botha and I have had a very positive start to the year. Between morning Chapel services, assemblies and Youth Group, we are busy but thoroughly enjoying being the student representatives of Craighead’s Special Character. It is our Christian values that make Craighead such a kind and special school in which to grow up and I am thrilled to have the chance to directly contribute to our unique culture.
There have been many highlights during my years at Craighead – from the Big Sing in Dunedin to the Outlook for Someday film awards in Auckland. I am so grateful to attend a school with a large number of sporting codes, committees and opportunities on offer to every student, and I have participated in many throughout my time here. Currently, Craighead is facilitating an Astronomy course for me through the University of Canterbury, and I am involved with SADD, Library, Chapel and Global Citizens committees.
Next year, I am intending to major in Physics or Astronomy at the University of Canterbury. I have always been passionate about the sciences and I am eager to study full-time. However, I don’t want to take this last year at Craighead for granted, but instead make the most of every minute. I have made the best friends and memories here and cannot wait for what I hope will be an incredible year ahead.
Moving from South Africa and having to start all over again was definitely a big challenge. The thought of making new friends, starting a new school and being amongst so any new people and cultures was overwhelming. As a result, when I joined Craighead as a Year 9 student in Term 2 of 2017, I was very nervous and shy and definitely not ready to attend an all-girls school.
However, I soon realised how supportive the teachers and students were. This made me feel welcome and encouraged me to get involved in sport. Throughout my years at Craighead, I have played a variety of sports such as Netball and Rugby, and outside of school, CrossFit. This has really helped me make friends and learn valuable life lessons. I have also been able to gain skills and confidence within myself that have enabled me to grow as an individual and feel a part of the Craighead family. This year I am honoured to have been given the opportunity to represent Craighead as Deputy Sacristan. Ms Graham and Rev. Lucy have been extremely supportive, helping me build my confidence for speaking in assemblies as well as in Chapel. Growing up in a Christian family, I am privileged to already have strong morals and beliefs. I am now also fortunate to be able to practice my Christian values, not only out of school but also within school. Next year I am planning on doing my Personal Training Certificate. This will allow me to save enough money to attend the Auckland University of Technology, studying Business Management and Marketing in 2023. I dream of one day starting my own business to help contribute to the New Zealand economy. I plan on making this year one to remember, making the most of all my opportunities and contributing as a Craighead leader. I am working hard to achieve my University Entrance and to help assist Sacristan Heidi Vogel and Rev Lucy in everything I can within our Leadership group.