Certificates of Distinction for Top Students

Hera Nguyen from La Salle College, Georgia Taylor from Ellenbrook Secondary College, Lara Yagmich from Swan Valley Anglican Community School, Ashley Veivers from Lesmurdie Senior High School, Max Chapman from Guildford Grammar School and Danielle Leotta from Lesmurdie SHS. Picture: David Baylis d448262
Hera Nguyen from La Salle College, Georgia Taylor from Ellenbrook Secondary College, Lara Yagmich from Swan Valley Anglican Community School, Ashley Veivers from Lesmurdie Senior High School, Max Chapman from Guildford Grammar School and Danielle Leotta from Lesmurdie SHS. Picture: David Baylis d448262

OUR star students from the eastern suburbs are aiming high.

Between them they have their sights set on careers in medicine, tourism, zoology and engineering.

Most have spent the past few weeks relaxing after years of toiling to get the entry score that will serve as the key to the next stage of their lives.

The Gazette talked to those students who received certificates of distinction for students who were in the top 0.5 per cent of their fields.

Lara Yagmich from The Vines is one of the success stories.

The 17-year-old graduated from Swan Valley Anglican Community College last year, picking up a certificate of distinction for human biological science and achieving a Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE) score of 98.8.

She said she hopes to study medicine as a rural student at the University of WA (UWA).

Lara said at times she found Year 12 exams overwhelming but found solace in the support of teachers.

La Salle College graduate and Stratton resident Hera Nguyen (17) earned a certificate of distinction in accounting and finance.

Despite her proficiency in numbers, Hera said she would like to pursue a medical career studying biomedical science.

Hera attributed her WACE score of 96.2 to a lot of stress and extreme cramming the day before exams.

Both Lara and Hera hope to start university this year.

Ellenbrook Secondary College’s certificate of distinction winner for tourism, hospitality and events, Georgia Taylor (17) said she would take a year off studying.

She said she sees a future for herself in tourism and events planning but wanted to work and travel to Europe before jumping into anything.

Georgia has been a volunteer with the City of Swan, helping set up and organise family events during school holidays.

“I’ve helped with a lot of community-based events and I’d like to see what other fields of events I could potentially get into,” she said.

Guildford Grammar graduate Max Chapman (17) performed exceptionally in all his subjects, achieving a WACE score of 99.85.

During his busy high school years he also found time to practise gymnastics 12 hours a week.

He hopes to study philosophy and engineering at UWA.

Max said he had an engineering-minded but also liked the research involved with philosophy.

Hard work also paid off for Lachlan Barrett of Lower Chittering, who earned a certificate of distinction in earth and environmental studies, and a certificate of commendation.

He plans to study science at UWA then continue with a course in zoology and botany.

His study tips include attending all the free study sessions run by Edith Cowan University.

“They are a great source of knowledge from various knowledgeable individuals,” Lachlan said.

He urged students to ask teachers for help when needed and said friends were always a great source of help.

“In-class rivalry is a good thing, as it drives you to be your best; just remember what’s really important,” he said.

“I also found bouncing ideas around a group aided with long-term memory.”

Bullsbrook College student Taniele Maffescions received a certificate of distinction in business services, information and communications.

More than 35 students from eastern suburbs schools received certificates of commendation.

Three Lesmurdie Senior High School students also performed well, with Danielle Leotta of Carmel, Ashley Veivers of Forrestfield and Marian Bunton-King of Gidgegannup achieving outstanding results in their WACE courses.

Marion earned the course exhibition for outdoor education, together with a certificate of distinction for outdoor education and a certificate of commendation, while Danielle received a certificate of distinction in English and a certificate of commendation.

“English was interesting last year because we looked at issues of gender and equality and I’m interested in social justice,” Danielle said.

The 17-year-old Carmel resident will begin a double degree course of study in commerce and arts at Curtin University next month.

Health promotion is the future pathway for new Curtin University student Ashley, who achieved the course exhibition in health studies and a certificate of distinction in health studies.