Good golly Miss Molly, what a mark

By Lachlan Durling

SITTING at her computer at 6.30am, St Joseph’s Molly O’Connell had her student ID and password already typed in to the VTAC website, ready for the 7am release.

Like most of the region’s year 12 students, she was up at the crack of dawn to see how her year boiled down.

With a 41 for Chemistry and 39s for Biology and Physics, she got 94.7 which made her the dux of the school — something she would find out later in the day.

‘‘The day before ATARs were released I told one of my friends it would be great if I got a 94 — and I did,’’ she said.

Molly said she wants to study materials science and engineering at Monash in Melbourne, and with her score of 94 looks set to be offered a place.

But she said she couldn’t have done it without support.

‘‘It (the ATAR) was because of great teachers, a supportive family and one of my close friends,’’ she said.

‘‘Her and I had this competition through the year and so I don’t think I would have done so well if it wasn’t for her.

St Joseph’s College principal Michael Delaney said students received results showing many of them made the most of learning opportunities provided for them.

‘‘I am confident that these results will allow the majority of our students to be looking back at their 2018 efforts with no regrets,’’ he said.

Mr Delaney said 66 per cent of the 89 year 12 students who applied for an ATAR achieved 50 or more with 15 per cent achieving an ATAR of 80 or more.

Students with study scores of 40 or more in individual subjects were:

Molly O’Connell, chemistry (41); Lainey Smith, Health and Human Development (40), VCE VET Health Services (40); Jessie Bennett, Further Mathematics (46); Hannah Poole, Physical Education (40), VCE VET Health Services (40); Emily Fisher, VCE VET Health Services (43); Georgia Slattery, VCE VET Health Services (43); Edith Rorke, Chemistry (40).

Mr Delaney said 111 students successfully completed VCE and 17 successfully completed VCAL.

Alyssa wins photo finish to top Grammar

TOP of the year 12 heap at Moama Anglican Grammar School was Alyssa Hunter.

Her ATAR of 95.5 consisted of band six results in Biology, Math and English and was followed closely by Jordan Godfrey with 95.2.

As NSW students received their individual HSC subject scores a day before ATARs were released, Alyssa said she resisted the urge to calculate them online for a ballpark ATAR figure.

But that’s not to say it stopped one of her friends, who was more than happy to estimate her ATAR for her.

‘‘My friend asked me what I got and totalled it up, I was like ‘don’t tell me’,’’ she said.

The online calculator totalled a result of 96 — not far off her actual score, and she said she had her teachers to thank.

‘‘I had some really incredible teachers who have been dedicated and were always available, they were almost more like friends,’’ she said.

Alyssa said she hoped to study advanced biomedicine at Monash next year.

Of the 49 year 12 students, 32 per cent received results in bands five and six — marks between 80 and 100.

“Our students have performed very well with some excellent results across the board. Within these results are many stories of individual achievement that are also worthy of praise for students and their teachers,’’ MAGS principal Carmel Spry said.

Students with band six results include: Jordan Godfrey; Mathematics Ext 1 (95) and Mathematics Ext 2 (93), Alyssa Hunter; Biology (92) and Advanced English (91), Alexandra Dwyer; PDHPE (90), Molly Frew; Biology (90), Italian Continuers (91) and PDHPE (91), Liam Tenace; Mathematics (93), Sarah McMahon; Community and Family Studies (90), Lachlan Ross; Music 1 (90).

Tom named Echuca College dux

WITH study scores lapping at 40’s door, Echuca College’s Tom Harris (pictured at left) was crowned dux of the school with an ATAR of 85.55.

Achieving scores of 39 for Biology and Further Mathematics, Tom said he was thrilled to receive his result.

Working through the ATAR release time, Tom admitted he took a quick break at 7am to duck out and check his score — he’d started work at 6am.

‘‘I was really happy with the result, it was around what I thought it would be,’’ he said.

Tom agreed with the other graduates who said successful study was about finding a balance between work and life, as he continued playing footy and cricket through the year.

‘‘It was staying on top of everything and putting in the effort through year 10 and 11, rather than just trying to learn it in the space of six months,’’ he said. ‘‘Also, the teachers here are incredible — I know all my teachers really well and I loved class.’’

Tom wants to study commerce at Deakin’s Geelong Waterfront campus.

Echuca College principal Chris Eeles congratulated the year 12s and said there was a wide scope of courses and pathways students would be pursuing.

‘‘For many students, they weren’t focused on getting into university courses and so we have had a lot of them find apprenticeships throughout the year, which was terrific news.

He said the school was proud its students and said most, if not all, who had opted for university had achieved the ATAR they needed for entry.