The Class of 2019 Light the Way – Vol 4

The Class of 2019
Light the Way

VOLUME FOUR

The Class of 2019 have come to define the college's glories and made history for themselves. In our fourth volume, Matthias, Megan, Alastair and Isabel share with us how success is beyond just academic excellence, their tips for living a full life in JC and words of encouragement for their juniors.

PHOTOS BY ASHER TAN, ANSELM LONG AND DING YONG KHAI

Matthias Ho

ALUMNUS OF CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL

Matthias Ho (18-I2) is an all-rounded student who displayed a spirit of excellence in not only his studies, but also in college-wide programmes and the wider community. Matthias was placed on the JC1 Dean’s List (Academic) and an awardee of the MOE Pre-University Scholarship. He was also the overall student-in-charge for the 2018 Student Forum, where he and his team facilitated a series of student-led forums to allow the student body to raise ideas and suggestions to further student college culture and improve existing processes. Matthias served as an Executive Member of the Pasir Ris Youth Executive Committee since 2017, and was a recipient of the Singapore Police Force Book Prize in 2019.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR RESULTS AND WHAT HELPED YOU ACHIEVE THEM?

I feel satisfied with my results. Initially, I was having a lot of doubts but closer to the release of the results, I decided to embrace and accept the results, no matter how good or how bad, without much expectations. I am really glad that my hard work had paid off. 

I am thankful for my friends and family that were always by my side, supporting me as I went through this journey. I am also especially grateful for the teachers who do not hesitate to answer our queries and dedicate their previous time to conduct consultations to help us improve. I think what really helped me is the support and the environment that helped to spur me on and maintain positivity. No matter what, I think pushing on and not giving up, while maintaining a positive learning attitude had really helped me to improve. 

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY IN EUNOIA AND WHAT MADE IT MEANINGFUL?

I think that my 2 years in Eunoia was really well spent. People think of JC as a purely academic institution, but for me, Eunoia was a school that provided me with many enriching experiences and many meaningful relationships. Apart from the countless hours trying to complete tutorials, revising notes and finish past year papers, what I remember the most are the little things - the tutorials where we not only learnt but had fun amongst ourselves and teachers, the times where we walked to Ghim Moh for lunch, the small pockets of break times where we either rushed to finish tutorials or took a quick nap. 

I am also especially grateful for my teachers, because they are inspiring, caring and try to teach us more than what is required in the syllabus, and more importantly, life lessons.  

WHAT ADVICE OR ENCOURAGEMENT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOUR JUNIORS?

Work hard and be positive! The journey is going to be long, but notice that everyone is going through the same thing. Although you and your friends might encounter different difficulties, you will always be able to support each other. No matter what happens along the way, look forward and keep going. If you are falling behind, don’t give up and stop, but keep on running because you can catch up. You cannot control the circumstances, but you can control your attitude and action. Also, it is important to be consistent. The two years here is a marathon, not a sprint, so remember to pace yourselves and not burn out! Don’t always rely on external motivations, but instead develop systems and routines to ensure you can keep on going and do consistent work. 

Megan Choo

ALUMNA OF CHIJ ST NICHOLAS GIRLS' SCHOOL

Megan Choo (18-O4) is an exceptional thinker and possesses outstanding intellectual habits. Her academic excellence was shown through attaining multiple academic accolades such as being on the Dean’s List (Academic) in both JC1 and JC2 and receiving the MOE Edusave Merit Award in 2018. In addition she also won the Lee Kuan Yew Award for Mathematics & Science which only served to affirm her exceptional aptitude in the STEM fields. Her passion and aptitude in Economics, in particular, also saw her taking up the subject at a Higher 3 level. As a humble and helpful individual, Megan she often tutored her schoolmates during Physics lectures and various other instances outside curriculum time. She also contributed her knowledge from H3 Economics by initiating and giving a talk to her juniors on what Game Theory is about. 

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR RESULTS AND WHAT HELPED YOU ACHIEVE THEM?

Quite satisfied. Confidence helped me achieve these results. Never sell yourself short and say that you don’t think that you’ll be able to achieve good grades, that will make you crumble from the stress and give up. Always believe in growth and that you have not reached your fullest potential yet.  A group of good friends who can drive each other to achieve even more also helped me achieve these results. For example, my friends in Dance and I reminded each other that even though it might be tough we had others who were in it with us as well. 

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY IN EUNOIA AND WHAT MADE IT MEANINGFUL?

Interesting with a lot of new and different experiences. My Dance friends, classmates and secondary school friends who pushed each other on, be it self-directed practice outside of CCA times or library meetups outside of school. I’m grateful to be a part of Eunite and Orientation as an OGL, which gave me a chance to know and help my juniors, have fun in school and be a part of something bigger than myself.

WHAT ADVICE OR ENCOURAGEMENT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOUR JUNIORS?

Have a good relationship with your classmates/teachers so it will be easier and more comfortable for you to ask for help if you ever need it. Next, always try to help others. I felt that helping others was a great way to sieve out what I did not understand. 

Don’t give up on your hobbies - find stuff to relieve stress. Find enjoyment in whatever you do - that will keep you going whenever things get tough (e.g. CCA, finding what you like about certain subjects or topics you’re good at). Lastly, celebrate successes, no matter how small. That will give you confidence and strength to carry on. 

Alastair Ang

ALUMNUS OF CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL

Alastair Ang (18-U5) is a student with a strong drive in achieving his academic goals. Amidst his commitments in the Bicultural Studies Programme, Alastair took up the challenge of studying H3 Economics. He also participated as a student delegate of Spain in a Model United Nations where he sharpened his insights surrounding geopolitical and historical issues. Beyond academic rigour, Alastair also displayed vigour as an avid member of the Outdoor Adventure Club (ODAC), having participated actively in various expeditions and competitions such as the Spartan Race and the National Vertical Marathon. 

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR RESULTS AND WHAT HELPED YOU ACHIEVE THEM?

It may not be what I really wanted but I trust that I’ve done the best I could in the process of preparing for it. While it was far from perfect, I think I cannot be solely defined by the grades I have attained. I am extremely grateful for the opportunities to learn from my classmates and friends I’ve met along the way. My teachers were equally crucial to the development of both my character and my academic achievements. With hard work, guidance and inspiration, I was able to attain the results today.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY IN EUNOIA AND WHAT MADE IT MEANINGFUL?

My journey in Eunoia is characterised by growth. My greatest inspiration since is Mr David Hoe, who with a difficult beginning and childhood, has now become a beacon of hope for many of his students. While Mr David no longer teaches, he continues to nurture teens with all his heart and a genuine hope to improve the world in his ways. He summarised my JC journey in two simple lines, that growing old is natural, but growing up is intentional. This has characterised my motivation and journey in Eunoia.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOUR JUNIORS?

It is important to not give up at any single stage in your life. Sometimes, effort will not equate to results, and many would be upset because of this imbalance. They would feel unfair, aggrieved, disappointed. But I think, honestly speaking, the fact that you have put in effort spells more about yourself than your grades. If your grades are the only thing that defines you, you are the failure in life, only because you have failed to see things past a piece of examination paper.

Isabelle Bridget Tan

ALUMNA OF CHIJ ST.NICHOLAS GIRLS' SCHOOL

Isabelle Bridget Tan (18-E2) has a natural academic and analytical ability, which saw her represent the college at the Singapore Chemistry Olympiad where she won a merit award. For her outstanding academic performance, she was also placed on the Dean’s List (Academic) in 2018, and received the MOE Edusave Merit Award as well as the Good Progress Award in the same year. In spite of her excellent academic record, Isabelle was a modest and unassuming Student Councillor who was involved in the planning of numerous college events such as Euphoria and Orientation. She was also an active member in the planning committee for the Student Council VIA project, leading her peers in developing a project to engage young children.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY TO THE A-LEVELS HERE IN EUNOIA?

I am overwhelmingly relieved. Now that I know my results, I have a better idea of the next step to take. I cannot explain how important the support of my teachers, friends and family was in helping me through this journey. Their words of encouragement or even just knowing that they were rooting for me, was enough to keep me going. 

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR JOURNEY IN EUNOIA AND WHAT MADE IT MEANINGFUL?

Lots of ups and downs, but at the end of the day, each experience was a learning opportunity. I think each failure has made me stronger and better able to cope with life. This was only possible because of my friends (including teachers) who, despite the difficult 2 years of JC, made my experience the most wholesome it could be.

WHAT ADVICE OR ENCOURAGEMENT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SHARE WITH YOUR JUNIORS?

Everyone has 24 hours a day, like how all players start off with the same amount of money at the beginning of a Monopoly game. Invest your time wisely in the things that matter, like spending quality time with friends and family, or having sufficient sleep. And give your all in whatever you do so that your experiences will be fulfilling. There will inevitably be lows (like getting a ‘go to jail’ card). In these times, be there for one another to keep each other going. 

Most importantly, please do not underestimate the importance of sleep! Forgoing some hours of late night studying in order to have sufficient sleep is more worthwhile than you think. Hang in there and all the best!