Three international students have been recognised for their impact on NSW schools and their communities at the annual International Student Awards Ceremony in Sydney on Thursday.
Mark Scott, Secretary of the Department of Education, congratulated Betty Bi from Burwood Girls High School, Sam Lee from Castle Hill High School, and Mahime Watanabe from Rose Bay Secondary College, who were selected from 60 nominations.
“These students have met the challenges of living and studying in a new country and have made the experience richer by embracing every opportunity to become involved in school and community activities,” Mr Scott said.
“They have made significant contributions through mentoring programs, involvement in charities, fundraising, and other community activities such as volunteer work within local communities.
“Charity and community work is important for developing empathy and understanding and, with the inclusion of international students, it develops skills in global citizenship for all students involved.
“The skills developed are important in an increasingly globalised world where transferable skills are critical to career development.”
Mr Scott also acknowledged the work of DE International, principals, teachers and school staff for their support of the highly successful international student program.
“Last year there were over 5,200 international student enrolments in more than 300 government schools across NSW, with 71 per cent of international school students in NSW choosing a government school,” Mr Scott said.
“This is testament to the quality of education we offer and we are proud of the role the NSW Department of Education has in assisting international students to achieve their goals.
“There are significant benefits from having international students in our schools. Our cultural diversity is enriched, networks are established and cross cultural understanding develops.”
2018 International Student Awards winners:
- The Leadership Award of $1000 was presented to Sam Lee from Castle Hill High School who has shown leadership and involvement in school life and has been a role model for other students. Sam consistently demonstrated leadership qualities by mentoring other international students, assisting with school and community events and assisted with running the Mitchell Youth Leadership Camp.
- The School Service Award of $1,000 was presented to Mahime Watanabe from Rose Bay Secondary College who has made a significant contribution to the school and local community. Mahome has organised several charity events such as fundraising for Beyondblue and World Vision and also excelled in her role as Environment Captain by driving a litter reduction and paper recycling campaign at the school.
- The Academic Award of $1,000 was presented to Betty Bi from Burwood Girls High School for attaining the highest Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) of 99.85. There were five nominees who received ATARs of over 99.