To stand before the school community as the College Dux was something I never expected to experience. I wanted to do well, but I didn’t realise how well I had the potential to achieve. It’s kind of bittersweet to me, as although I am incredibly grateful to be awarded such a significant title, it’s a bit surreal to acknowledge that my high school journey is finally over.

However, the time also flew. The class of 2020 has grown together, developed from scared Year 7s to admittedly, scared, yet eager Year 12s who are ready to take charge of their destiny. Although our individual paths are diverging as we forge our own futures, the cohesive community created will forever be held dearly to me and for that I am grateful.

Our resilient cohort will be capable of whatever adventure they seek as we have always been taught by the school to pursue our potential. I could not be more appreciative for the opportunities offered, the communities cultivated and memories made during my time at St Joseph’s.

The immense support and dedication consistently demonstrated by the St Joseph’s staff is a crucial component of the high school experience. Honestly, we owe all of our successes to you, due to your continuous enlightening guidance, substantial resources and ongoing care. Whether it be the nurturing listening ear of a Homeroom teacher, the inspirational guidance of a House Leader or the unrivalled dedication of a Year 12 teacher, their influence is unparalleled and permanent. It took me my Year 12 to recognise this, so I hope I can help you acknowledge this too.

My advice to you, the current students of St Joseph’s, is to ensure your perspective is optimistic. The key to enjoying school, making the most of memories and cherishing your experience, is to perceive it positively. Instead of dwelling on the negatives, celebrate the small wins and small successes. This especially rings true for Year 12, as it is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. You’ll hear this phrase a million times in your final year, specifically from Mr Brown, but my point is, not to get intimidated by the distance, but to celebrate every kilometre individually.

The main lesson I learnt from my Year 12 experience is to succeed to your expectations; this will allow you to truly fulfil your academic potential. Try not to compare yourself to others standards, and run your own marathon. Perception of success will vary, and that’s perfectly normal. Just achieve your successes and then you can easily celebrate these wins. Year 12 was one of the best years of my life, and if you can adopt this optimistic perspective whilst achieving your version of success, it can be yours too.

To the 2021 Year 12s, I wish you all the best. I struggle to give advice to you, as my Year 12 experience will be so drastically different from yours, but I encourage you to view your challenges as learning experiences and celebrate success whenever you can. You have the potential to achieve – you just need to believe you can.

To the younger year levels. Although you may feel the advice I give is not particularly relevant at the moment, I encourage you to enjoy your schooling. Cherish friendships and make the most of your experience. However, currently you are in the best position to positively influence your future. Remember this, as the choices you make and opportunities you pursue can eventually shape your adventure; I can attest to this, as a Year 10 camp got me my accommodation for university.

Once more, thanks again to the staff, students, and I’d like to thank my family as well – without their support, I would’ve been a mess throughout the year. Anyway, I wish everyone all the best in your future endeavours, and I am so grateful for all the guidance, assistance and inspiration this school community has given me.

 

Miss Sascha Leslie

2020 College Dux

 

2020 College Dux Speech

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