Sasha Patil, a student at St Paul’s Collegiate, recently gained the division’s ultimate award – Grand Prior – and was named champion team leader at the St John’s national youth competition.
The Grand Prior Award, presented by the Governor-General as the Prior of St John in New Zealand, sees cadets set goals and achieve in a variety of areas.
There are 27 subjects available, with the award gained by completing six compulsory badges, six badges of the cadet’s own choice, and 100 hours of community service.
Sasha, 15, joined the youth section (ages 8 to 18) in 2010 after a friend ‘‘told me all about it’’.
She led the central region (Bombay Hills to Wellington) at the recent national youth competition in Auckland.
Other members of the six-strong group included Hamilton Girls High School students Rachel Li and Medhavi Patel.
This was Sasha’s first nationals as team leader after gaining four placings as a central team member last year.
The 2016 edition saw Sasha named champion team leader for New Zealand, while central won the first aid team test (medical) and was runner-up in both first aid and drill.
Sasha, aiming at selection for the world competition from next year’s nationals, said the team had trained fortnightly since January.