BCE Year 12 graduate reflects on leadership journey


St Michael’s College Merrimac graduation reflection - Mikayla Thorn. 

St Michael’s College Merrimac graduation reflection - Mikayla Thorn. 

As I reflect on the past thirteen years of my life, I am taken back to my very first day of High School.  

I will never forget the words my parents shared with me, “Mikayla, you’re about to go from the very top of the ladder, all the way back to the bottom, it’s going to be so different, but change is a good thing.”  

I have always jumped headfirst into any leadership opportunity challenging myself to step out of my comfort zone. 

If I were to give any student advice on the next coming years of their life, it would be to not be afraid of change and instead embrace it.  

Something I always remember in my day to day is if you do not take the chance, you will never know what could have been, or in other words ‘YOLO’ (meaning you only live once). 

One of my highlights of being a captain was gathering the entire school to witness a talent show.  

I remember thinking should I start a crowd wave?  

It felt daunting, but I thought, what I could lose was much less than what I could gain. 

With that resolve, I initiated the wave.  

At that moment I realised I had achieved not only my main goal as Cultural Captain – to bring the school community together, but also one of my personal goals – to not let fear hold me back from opportunities. 

Next year I am taking a massive leap out of my comfort zone to participate in a program called Rotary Youth Exchange.  

The program will see me travel overseas to Minnesota in the United States of America for an entire year.  

This next year is going to be a year where I grow as a person and challenge myself to take on as many opportunities as I can, which will help me along with the subjects I studied at school, to open any door I wish to. 

As I conclude these pivotal thirteen years of my life and prepare to embark on the next chapter, I want to express my profound gratitude.  

I am grateful to St Michael's College, its dedicated staff, and the supportive community that has enriched my journey with countless remarkable opportunities.  

My heartfelt appreciation extends to my parents, family, and friends, who have consistently provided encouragement, love, and invaluable life advice.  

My closing advice is to remember that the only thing holding you back is yourself, so never be afraid to take the leap. 

About the Rotary Youth Exchange:  

The Rotary Youth Exchange program provides opportunities for Australian high school students to live and study abroad. 

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