Education: Takapuna Grammar School
A love of golf
Mum and Dad gave him a set of plastic golf clubs at four and from that point on Ethan Sangster was hooked.
He joined the Peninsular Club at about six, he remembers, and was certainly one of its youngest members. He was the Junior 9 Hole Championship winner in September 2008. Since the age of 10 he has practised and played out of the Remuera Club and now he has been spotted by talent scouts with New Zealand Golf and become a member of the Auckland Development Golf squad. Only about seven young golfers, aged 13 – 17, are selected in any one year to be included in a development programme designed to bring out that talent. He was only 11 years and 161 days old when he scored a hole-in-one, making him one of the youngest to record a hole in one at Remuera.
His parents were quick to identify his skill and talent and while Dad has “played a little” according to Ethan there is not a strong family connection with the sport.
Ethan is currently in Year 10 and he freely admits that he has no other hobbies or interests. What time there is, after school work is done, is spent at golf. Often he is at the club on a Saturday from as early as 7.30 a.m., and not home until after 5.00 p.m. Sunday is also practice day. It is this level of dedication that has his handicap at 6. Some of his coaching is provided by Mauri Stokes, who is a TGS ex-pupil, a nice connection at this point. At Remuera, Ethan is one of a group of about 20 young golfers who practice and play every Saturday. Ethan really likes the fun aspects of golf, meeting people, and having a good time.
Long term, Ethan wants to move to the United States, hopefully on a college scholarship to pursue his golfing ambition; to become a professional. In the immediate future it is Under 19 tournaments he has his eyes set on.
Young scientist in the limelight
Out shining all expectations, Year 11 student Wendy Jian beat university students, up to ten years older than her, to qualify as a finalist in The Sir Paul Callaghan awards.
The Sir Paul Callaghan awards is a competition where students must apply science, technology or maths ideas to come up with a project that will benefit New Zealand's environmental, economic and social well-being. The awards are on a nation-wide scale for students between 13-25 years old.
Only 12 finalists moved on to the last round, held at Massey University’s Wellington campus. Wendy was the youngest of the 12.
Wendy's proposal uses the scientific theory of induction for water heating, at a cheaper cost and in a more environmentally friendly way. “I am passionate about science, I find it really interesting,” Wendy said.
“I presented my idea to a wide audience, ranging from people in the science and business community, to parents of the finalists, as well as my teachers and peers watching the live streaming of the event. The 12-minute presentation was followed by questions from one of the judges, Kim Hill, who is a professional New Zealand broadcaster.”
“Following that, at night, the awards dinner was held at Government house. Unfortunately, I did not receive the Sir Paul Callaghan ‘Highly Commended Award,’ but I was very honoured to be awarded the ‘Merit Award’ by the Chancellor of Lincoln University.
“From this award, I realised that I have developed communicating science ideas to a wide range of people in the community and I have certainly learnt a lot of the different aspects of science from other finalists’ presentations.”
“Overall, the Eureka! Sir Paul Callaghan awards gave me a huge experience and insight into the path that I might take in the future. It helped give me many opportunities to talk to various different people from different areas of society that I would have never thought to be able to meet.”
Our young Maori leaders
Sean Wainui (Ngati Porou,) Anezka Hoskin (Ngati Porou, Te Whanau o Apanui), Tennielle Matthews (Ngapuhi, Tuhoe), Nikita Phillips (Ngapuhi, Tainui), and Clayton Hockley (Te Au Pouri), have been members of the Whanau Class since arriving at Takapuna Grammar School.
They are very strong members of the school’s Kapa Haka group, and responsible for the teaching of the various items for Polyfest. They all also have had a strong role in the teaching and leading of Tikanga Maori within the school community, such as the school haka during the House Haka competitions, and the haka powhiri for our manuhiri (visitors) to the school. They have represented the school at various cultural events with pride and mana, such as the tangi of a staff member’s husband, the “tuku taonga” of new senior managers to Takapuna, and the “tuku taonga” of Deputy Principal, Kim Basse, who has gone to be Principal at Ruapehu College, in Ohakune.
Sean and Anezka are also prefects. Sean is captain of the 1st XV and Senior Mixed Touch and a member of the North Harbour U18 Representative Team and the Development squad for the Blues franchise. One of Sean’s goals is to be a professional rugby player. He is also interested in being a builder/carpenter.
Anezka is involved with sports, (Touch Rugby), House activities and competitions. She also helped organize the International Evening for Cultural performances. Anezka’s goal is to attend University and pursue a career in Science - in Medicine or Genetics. Tennielle has a strong interest in dance and would like to pursue this as a future career. Nikita hopes to be involved with Early Childhood Education or join the armed forces. Clayton has been involved with softball (for the school and club), bowls (representing North Harbour at regional and national level) and rugby league. He hopes to join the Navy next year.
“Whaia to iti kahurangi – Aspiring to your personal Excellence”. These words reflect the character, nature and personalities of these young, outstanding leaders.