Outstanding achievements

2018-01-03 13:30
Matric top achievers Bradley D’Eramo (17), from Kearsney College and Erin Crossman (17) from St Anne’s Diocesan College both got seven distinctions each.

Matric top achievers Bradley D’Eramo (17), from Kearsney College and Erin Crossman (17) from St Anne’s Diocesan College both got seven distinctions each. (Ian Carbutt)

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Independent Examination Board (IEB) pupils across the country waited with bated breath as their 12 years of schooling culminated in the release of their final results at midnight.

Some of the top performing pupils from various schools in and around the Midlands shared how they were handling the news of their outstanding results after the long wait.

With nine distinctions for her final matric exams under her belt, St John’s D.S.G. matriculant Leah Suchet was on Tuesday believed to be the top achiever in Pietermaritzburg.

Speaking to The Witness from her grandparents’ home in Australia, an excited Suchet said while she had expected good results, she never thought she would be a top achiever. “I am so excited. This is so surprising,” said Suchet over a WhatsApp call on Tuesday.

When The Witness called Suchet, it was just past midnight in Australia as they are nine hours ahead of South Africa, but the excited top achiever said the late night call was a welcomed surprise.

Suchet has been travelling with a friend for the last month and was staying with her grandparents in Australia before returning to her parents in South Africa on January 11.

Suchet will be studying at Stellenbosch University this year, and will be starting her BSC in molecular biology and biotechnology. “I am very excited. I cannot wait,”’ she said.

She said she found the final exams a lot better than the trial exams and thanked her school for preparing their matriculants so well.

St John’s D.S.G’s Leah Suchet bagged nine distinctions.

In a statement from St John’s D.S.G on Tuesday, the school said their 2017 class had achieved the best results in the school’s 120-year history.

The school said Suchet was placed in the top one percent of candidates in English; Life Sciences; Mathematics; and Physical Science. “Leah’s results earned her a place on the IEB’s Outstanding Achievements list. This means that she was placed within the top five percent of candidates in six or more subjects.”

With a 100% pass rate, eight St John’s D.S.G. pupils were placed in the top one percent of candidates who wrote the IEB exams.

Kearsney’s David Comrie achieved eight distinctions, including 100% for Engineering Graphics and Design. Dux and first team squash captain, he was in the top one percent in SA for three subjects

Jodie Koenig from The Wykeham Collegiate said she would be celebrating her seven distinctions in Mozambique where she is on holiday with friends. Her mom Sandi said Jodie, who was head girl last year, had been determined to go to Wykeham Collegiate after she visited the school one day and “just fell in love with it”.

“She has worked consistently. She just kept on top of it and was totally self-motivated. We never had to tell her to work. But she also had fun and loves her sport,” said Sandi.

Jodie will be taking a gap year this year “stooging” at a school in Kent in England and will then study a degree in mechatronics.

Kayla Westerdyk, who only turns 18 next month, did not let her young age stand in the way of matric success.

The Wykeham Collegiate pupil, who obtained seven distinctions said she worked “really hard because I wanted to do the best I can do”.

“I have been trying to keep the results out of my mind and not stress too much because I ran out of time in a few of my exams,” she said.

Accountancy and maths, which are among the subjects she received distinctions in, are her best subjects and this year she is heading to Stellenbosch University to study accounting.

Tessa Winter, also from Wykeham, got seven distinctions under her belt and will be leaving soon for Stellenbosch University to study mechanical engineering, following in the footsteps of her sister who is doing the same degree. “I can’t say I liked studying. But I always worked hard at school. And being a weekly boarder at Wykeham Collegiate helped. This year has been a lot about friends, studying together and helping each other,” she said.

Mitchell Green (18) from Hilton College is a whizz at most subjects and managed to obtain seven distinctions. But maths and French are what he loves best. He said when he started at the school he set himself goals. “My advice to others is that if you believe you can do it, you can do it. You must set goals and commit to them,” he said.

Green is looking to study law overseas, either in the UK, America, Australia or France.

He is also a keen musician — he plays the saxophone and the piano and sings.

Presently on holiday with his family in the Drakensberg, he said they had kept a bottle of champagne aside for results day “and we are now going to pop it”.

Some of the top achievers at St Anne’s Diocesan College were ecstatic about their results and said they were glad the long wait for their results was finally over.

Emma Pitout (18), Katerina Itopoulos (18) and Emma Pitt (18) were all on holiday at St Francis, Eastern Cape, awaiting their results.

Pitout, who got seven distinctions, said she was nervous but was hopeful she had met her expectation of at least six distinctions.

Itopoulos, who also bagged seven distinctions, said she had worked hard throughout the year, but had not anticipated that she would have aced all her subjects.

Pitt, with six distinctions, said the news she had done well had “made my 2018”.

“It has been nerve wracking having to wait for so long for our results,” she said.

The three teenagers said they will be waiting up for their detailed results with their family and friends.

Erin Crossman (17), also from St Anne’s, with seven distinctions, said she managed to achieve her own set target by doing well.

“I have been feeling uneasy but also hoping for the best,” said Erin who plans to study medicine next year.

Another St Anne’s pupil, Kim Yammin, said she had worked “unbelievably hard” to obtain her six distinctions and plans to study a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics at Stellenbosch University this year.

Kevin Fleischer, who is the proud father of Michaelhouse twins, Bongi and Antony, said he was “chuffed” his boys did exceptionally well.

The pair gathered a total of 13 distinctions between them with Bongi getting seven and Antony getting six.

Antony said he was glad he did well but was more anxious about meeting his “expectations and ambitions”. He plans to study computer science at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and genetics but was still waiting for a response from another university in the USA.

Bongi said he was expecting the best results based on how hard he had worked throughout the year. “It’s great that I did well because my whole high school career was building up to this moment.”

Bongi is planning on studying actuarial sciences at UCT and was also awaiting a response from a university in the states.

Cameron Clark, also a Michaelhouse pupil, said he was happy his work and efforts had paid off.

Out of the nine subjects Cameron did, he managed to ace seven of them and was hopeful that his results would be enough for him to study a BCom in philosophy and economics at UCT this year.

Another proud father, Rakesh Ramthol, said he was “over the moon” about his son’s seven distinctions.

He said Kirin was currently on holiday in England and he could not wait to relay the news to him.

“He had worked very hard and me and the rest of the family will be staying up waiting for his results so we can sent them through to him,” said Ramthol.

Bradley D’Eramo (17), from Kearsney College, said he was “really excited” about his results and was glad that the wait was finally over.

Bradley got seven distinctions and plans to study accounting at the Stellenbosch University.

“It feels like it has been ages since we wrote our last exam, I can’t even remember what the questions were,” laughed Bradley.

The top achiever at Epworth School, Shaniaé Maharaj, received seven distinctions and said she was glad her hard work had paid off. “My philosophy was to take each day at a time and I used the same philosophy to cope with the long wait for our results.”

Shaniaé plans to study a law degree at the Stellenbosch University and said she would be waiting up with her entire family for her detailed results.

“The wait will be like the New Year’s Eve countdown but more nerve wracking,” she said.

Maritzburg Christian School top achiever, Heidi Oberholzer, told The Witness on Tuesday she was shocked to hear that she had done well.

“Oh wow! I am delighted and cannot wait to see my actual marks because I had worked really hard and put my all into it,” she said.

Heidi will also be studying accounting at Stellenbosch University.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

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