Saturday, September 08, 2012

When it comes to awards it’s easier to list what Sylvie Chan hasn’t won rather that what she has. Earlier this year the year 13 Rosehill College student came runner-up in the Lions Young Ambassadors award for zone 8 which runs from Manurewa to Waiuku and Maramarua to Kawakawa Bay. A few months later she won two Stevenson Papakura youth awards for excellence in maths and science. And it wasn’t long before she was crossing the stage again – this time winning Zonta’s annual Young Women in Public Affairs award. But the real windfall came at Rosehill College’s end-of-year prizegiving where Sylvie won a Jerkovich Trust award, a Papakura Rotary Club scholarship and a Auckland University scholarship. She was also named top scholar in all her subjects – economics, biology, chemistry, history and maths with calculus – and crowned school dux. "I’m really pleased, I’ve put in a lot of hard work this year and I’m glad that it’s paid off," she says. "All the support from friends, teachers and parents – I can make them proud by doing something like this." The university scholarship means Sylvie can breathe a little easier too – she has her heart set on becoming a humanitarian doctor and any money she’s been awarded has gone into a savings account to help pay her way through university. Sylvie says providing she maintains a B plus average the university scholarship will cover her tuition and compulsory fees and give her $2500 to spend every year for three years. "They sent out a letter saying how many people applied for the scholarship," she says. "There were 960 applicants and they gave out 110 nationally." So far the bright 18-year-old hasn’t had time to celebrate her successes – she’s been studying for and sitting NCEA and scholarship exams. This year she’s sat five NCEA and four scholarship subjects. Add to that the two-year 13 NCEA and scholarship exams she sat in physics and statistics last year and Sylvie should leave school with certificates in seven NCEA and six scholarship subjects. Despite all that and the fact she’s part of the school’s culture and environmental committees, a head student, a student advisor and is a member of junior Rotary club Interact, Sylvie would argue she’s just like ever other teenager. She watches television until 10pm or 11pm and enjoys shows like ER and the Big Bang Theory "because it’s full of nerdy jokes". She’s also on social networking site Facebook "probably a bit more than I should be", likes going to the movies and enjoys shopping. So how does she do it all? She’s just "learned how to fit things in – routine helps". Her Malaysian parents "are pretty happy" with her achievements and just want her to have a good profession, she says. "My family are really encouraging – they say just try and do your best." Sylvie was born in New Zealand, first went to Conifer Grove Primary School then Rosehill Intermediate before moving to Rosehill College. Ad Feedback Before she starts her studies at medical school she’s taking a well-earned break. She’s off to Malaysia with her mum for six weeks to spend Christmas with her extended family. Hopefully she’ll leave all the texts books behind. - © Fairfax NZ News Award after award BY IMOGEN NEALE Last updated 05:00 09/12/2009

No comments: