Adeleine Watson

Fifty-five graduates returned to Somerville House on Monday 1 February to have their achievements celebrated at the Academic Honours Assembly. The School celebrated the strength and resilience of their 2020 graduates who are now focussing on their chosen career pathways.

The 2020 Senior cohort have maintained the School’s longstanding tradition of academic excellence, achieving strong grades with the release of
ATAR results.

Seventy-one past students received an ATAR of 90 or above, with Adeleine Watson joining an exclusive group of thirty Queensland students to receive the highest possible ATAR of 99.95.

Dean of Academic Programs, Mrs Wendy Jurss, acknowledged the hard work and dedication of the entire 2020 cohort at the Honours Assembly.

“Our students achieved very strong overall results, with ten students being awarded an ATAR of 99 or above, a third of the cohort achieving 95 or above and well over half of the cohort receiving 90 and above. Nine students also achieved perfect scores in a variety of subjects and 32 students achieved full marks in their unseen external exams across a variety of subjects,” Mrs Jurss said.

“Sixteen students graduated with an additional qualification such as a Certificate III, Certificate IV or Diploma, and all students graduated with their QCE,” she said.

“We are so very proud of our Year 12 graduates from 2020, not only because of their outstanding results but also because of the way they approached their Senior Years. They navigated a new style of assessment in Queensland, during a pandemic, and did so with strength, grace and courage.” 

“They embraced the use of technologies with ease and made the most of connecting with teachers and friends using these platforms. These leaders of tomorrow have shown that they have what it takes to make a difference in the world,” Mrs Jurss said.

The School’s 2020 graduates have continued the legacy of academic excellence with 81.4% of students offered a place in their first or second university preference.

Principal Mrs Kim Kiepe also honoured the high achievers of 2020 at the special assembly, expressing her privilege to be in the company of these young women who have distinguished themselves with an excellent academic standard.

“These young women now join thousands of past students in our 122-year history who have bought honour to themselves, to their families, and to their school. They should be as proud of their efforts as we are of them,” Mrs Kiepe said.

“An ATAR has a short life span; its currency is lost when a student is accepted into a tertiary course. However, it is worth celebrating for what it represents; it represents sustained academic effort, and this assembly is a celebration of consistency, persistence, diligence, interest, focus, aspiration and growth,” she said.

“Our newest graduates have contributed to the legacy of high academic endeavour at Somerville House.”

The Academic Honours Assembly forms an important part of the commencement of each new school year at Somerville House. It is an opportunity to inspire and ignite the current student body; to instil a passion for their learning today, and excitement for their future aspirations.

Mrs Kiepe voiced her hope that the School’s current students would emulate Year 12 students gone
before them.

“Follow in their footsteps and aim high,” Mrs
Kiepe said.

“We encourage all students to achieve their best, and our teachers work with passion and a sense of duty to nurture the individuals under their care,” she said.

“Our 2020 graduates may have left Somerville House, but their legacy lives on.”

Amelia Mackie

Academic Honours recipient and 2020 graduate, Amelia Mackie, was one of many students who returned to the School in acknowledgement of her high achievements.

Amelia has achieved provisional entry into Medicine at the University of Queensland and will shortly commence three years of study in a Bachelor of Science majoring in Biomedicine, after which she will achieve her direct entry.

Miss Mackie reflected upon her time at the School and her appreciation for the opportunity afforded to her at Somerville House. “The support from the School and the teachers made us feel prepared for ATAR, despite our time spent learning from home,” Miss Mackie said.

“The teachers went above and beyond for us. For example, my Science teachers stayed back after school for thirty minutes to explain electrochemical cells. They sacrificed their time to make sure we achieved the best possible, and without this dedication, I don’t believe I would have made it through the external exams as well as I did,” she said.

“We also received so much support from the Student Wellbeing team, which included our Careers Counsellor, Ms Hatzimihail, who was a great support for me during my Senior Years. Regardless of what you want to do, whether it is Medicine or Occupational Health and Safety, Ms Hatzimihail knows everything you need to know about getting into university, and she will help you do that.”

“The staff are so supportive of the students in whatever they choose to do and what it takes to get to that stage. It creates a really good atmosphere, and when we come back here, we really are so thankful for the teachers,” Miss Mackie said.

The School’s outlook continues in the tradition of Miss Fewings, as the Founding Principal who established a school designed to educate young women to take a leading role in society. 

Today, Somerville House is focussed on educating the next generation of fearless leaders of change so that they are well-prepared for the future workforce of
the 2030s.