BCE graduate reflects on her Year 12 schooling journey



As Brisbane Catholic Education (BCE) Year 12 students prepare to graduate this Friday 18 November 2022, Carmel College Thornlands student and School Captain Holly Baker reflects on her experience as a school leader and details her plans and passions for after school. 
Holly Baker:  
When I first started my journey in Year 7 at Carmel College, I made myself a goal to strive for excellence.  
At the age of 11, I knew the only way to excel in my senior years was to refine my craft as a junior, moulding my study habits, adopting a disciplined schedule, and constructing a growth mindset.  
As these traits of persistence and diligence began to mirror in my actions and results, my teachers at Carmel College fostered my potential and guided my journey by refining my writing and working with me on my independent learning style. I gained a mutual trust with my educators, where through demonstrating my commitment to learning, I was provided with the opportunity to thrive in my learning. My future achievements were attributed to this mentoring which spurred me into not only academic immersion but also engagement in College life.  
After assigning myself a strict and hands-on approach to my learning, I was drawn to creating a positive impact on my school by involving myself in social justice, artistic and athletic life, on top of my academia. I found my love for making a difference and pursued this passion throughout my education. As more staff at Carmel College began to observe my eagerness, I was taken under the wing of Mrs Baldwin who helped me define myself as a student at the College and helping shape me into the senior leader I am today.  
Being School Captain has presented as a welcome and rewarding challenge where I have been able to collaborate with the amazing student and teacher leadership team, making a positive impact on schooling life and ensuring the College is more than just a school, but instead a community built on fostering immersive education.  
Despite the unique hardships of 2022, I have loved sharing my passion for education and pursuing a culture of togetherness and inspiring the Year 7 students, as I once was five years ago, to immerse themselves in all the opportunities presented to them.  
As a leader and senior, this year has taught me a lot about the importance of physical and mental health, and I strongly believe that the ability to thrive and excel in all aspects of schooling life is solely reliant on the capacity to retain knowledge, process challenges and overcome hardship.  
As I worked to instill this message to the student body, The same notion was true for myself as I worked to achieve my final ATAR score. To ensure my success in Year 12, my primary focus of this year has become to ensure that I had the space to process stressful situations, create a study schedule that considers my mental and physical availabilities, and learn from each assessment to improve. This outlook was not only proven critical to my studies, but also became the foundation for my love for psychology, an avenue I look forward to pursuing over the next four years at university.  
The best advice I can give to future seniors pursuing an ATAR pathway is to ensure you identify what you want to get out of your education early on, and work persistently and diligently to achieve it. Hard work is at the heart of success, and you will only see the profits of your labour through many trials and errors, as you work to perfect your craft.  
Pablo Picasso described it best when he said, “action is the foundational key of all success”, teaching the notion that achievement cannot be reached until you take the first step. Success is a journey, so do not expect to be the best at something on your first go but ensure you learn from every assessment and fine-tune your skills. When push comes to shove and the final externals come around, it is important to know that all you can do is your best and that will be reflected in your results.   

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