Rockhampton Grammar School Dux, James Shaker recieved an OP one and hopes to follow a career in Science
Rockhampton Grammar School Dux, James Shaker recieved an OP one and hopes to follow a career in Science

Rockhampton Grammar graduates share career dreams

OP SCORES have been released and it seems Rockhampton Grammar School students are currently leading the pack with five Year 12s scoring an OP1.

James Etherington, Keane Henderson, Liam White, Dasuni Ralapanawa and James Shaker were among the 731 students in Queensland who received an OP1.

Rockhampton Grammar School headmaster Dr Phillip Moulds said the school was an environment where expectations were high and students worked hard.

"The results are excellent and just one indication of how well RGS students excel in the community," he said.

The Morning Bulletin chatted with the Rockhampton Grammar students to find out about life after OP scores.

Rockhampton Grammar School dux James Shaker hopes to follow a career path in science now that he has finished school with top marks.

James said he always enjoyed learning new things at school and worked tirelessly throughout high school to ensure he received the best marks possible when he finished.

"There will always be late nights of work, but you have to realise it's okay for life not to be breezy," James said. "While you have to work hard on studies, don't be discouraged if things don't go your way.

"They (marks) are not there to define us as a person; they are there for us to learn how to do these things.''

Runner-up dux Dasuni Ralapanawa will travel to Monash University in Melbourne on January 6 for an interview with their school of medicine after receiving her OP1.

Dasuni said she always had a passion to follow in her family's medical footsteps and now has to wait until January 20 to see if she will be accepted to study at her chosen university.

"I've always had an interest in medicine, knowing I can help people when they are at their most fragile and vulnerable state - whether that's in a big or a small way," Dasuni said.

Dasuni said 2015 had been a tough but worthwhile year and put her academic achievements down to "just hard work".

"As they say, practice makes perfect and what you put in is what you get out," Dasuni said.

"It's been a tough year but it's certainly been worth it."

High school graduate Keane Henderson also wanted to pursue a degree in medicine and is hoping to secure a spot at James Cook University.

Keane said a big thank you must go to his family and a large portion of the school for their endless support throughout his schooling.

"I'm hoping to gain a position in James Cook University's medicine degree in Townsville and continue playing some rugby up there as well," he said.

"I currently aspire to work in a rural area as a doctor. I'm still unsure what specialisation I'll pursue, but I have plenty of time to decide.

"Once I'm much older, I think I'll end up going back to university to become a high school teacher."

Liam White grew up in remote towns across Queensland before moving to Rocky and hopes to work as a dentist in remote communities after seeing the need for dental health.

He said he knew all too well the reality which faced rural and remote communities when it came to health.

"My family suffered pretty bad with dental health due to a lack of health services where we lived, even when we first moved to Rockhampton you had to wait a year to see a dentist," Liam said.

"It would be cool if one day I could work in a regional or remote area and help families with their dental needs,'' Liam said.

James Etherington is nervously awaiting university offers but is sure to be accepted after receiving an OP1.

The Rockhampton Grammar Student said he was hoping to study chemistry in Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne, which could lead to a career in research or medicine.

"My summer holidays leading up to uni will consist of working casually, swimming and water polo training for upcoming state titles, but most importantly relaxing after what has been a hectic year," James said.

"I'm also trying to spend as much time as possible with all of my mates before we all go off in our different directions.

"Nothing would have been possible without the fantastic teachers at Grammar, as well as the support shown by all staff members and the entire 2015 cohort. Everyone was willing to help others out and I believe that is why our grade was able to experience the success we did."