With his sights set on Cambridge University, Simon Han will get to experience a taste of Cambridge life these July school holidays having been accepted for the Cambridge Summer School.
The programme will see Simon spend two weeks living and studying at one of the University of Cambridge’s prestigious colleges – St Catharine’s College. He will be tutored in economics as well as given valuable insight in how to prepare a Cambridge application.
For the Year 13 student, this is an exciting opportunity and one that will set him in good stead for his future. “My goal is to attend Cambridge next year and study economics through to masters level. I would like to one day work as either a government official advising in economics or to teach economics at Cambridge.”
Hard word and determination has put Simon on this path. A top achiever, Simon’s academic results are nothing short of impressive. His NCEA level 1 grade point average (GPA) was 92% and 100% for level 2. As a Year 12 student, he gained passes for New Zealand Scholarship exams in Chinese, Calculus and Geography. This year Simon is an Academic Prefect and part of the group who voluntarily tutor students from across all year levels that require help with their studies.
Simon came to St Paul’s from China as a Year 11 boarding student. Wanting to improve his English and have an opportunity at an all-round education, Simon and his parents chose St Paul’s. “New Zealand is a beautiful country and I wanted to come here and learn more about the culture. Being a boarder in Clark House means I get a real taste for how English is used daily.”
A keen tennis player of 10 years, Simon is also the tennis captain and was part of the team who ranked fifth in the 2017 and 2018 national mixed double championships and fourth in the 2019 national boys’ cup. For individual tennis, he is the champion of Waikato Secondary School single senior group. Simon is also a member of the concert band, that claimed gold at the ITM Music Festival last year, and the school choir.
“I have benefited so much from my time here in New Zealand and at St Paul’s. I feel I fit the value better here as I can excel in not just academics, but also other areas like my sport and music. I have set high goals for myself and by coming here and studying NCEA, I have more confidence in myself to reach those goals, and for that I am extremely grateful.”
“My motivation comes from my parents, who keep telling me we only live life once so it is up to me how I choose to live it.”