My Roedean Story – Andrea Jury

Posted: December 11, 2018

When I was a five-year-old girl with a blonde lion-like Afro, my curious imagination was completely captivated by the simple daily challenges of counting beads, exploring Letterland, and mastering the art of holding a hockey stick. Sitting on the floor of Madam Hedgehog’s Grade 0 classroom, I did not fully appreciate the thirteen years of endless opportunities a Roedean education would offer me.

While my love of Maths and Sport has remained fairly constant throughout my school career, I have been able to develop important skills and learn valuable lessons from my interactions with these personal interests at Roedean. A greater social awareness and global perspective have also allowed me to understand the benefits of these interests beyond a school environment.

Starting most mornings with swimming practice and watching the sun rise between exhausting swim sets, my sporting commitments at Roedean have been extremely effective method of stress relief in my everyday life. As a member of the Senior Swimming Team and Hockey First Team, I have come to realise the importance of taking responsibility for my own success and the effectiveness of leading by example, as well as how unwavering determination and dedication, with a slightly light-hearted attitude, will allow me to flourish.
My early fascination with simple Arithmetic has evolved into an appreciation of more complex applications, such as Integral Calculus. Reflecting on my Matric year, some of my fondest memories come out of AP Maths classroom in which we crowd around whiteboard to unpack intricate mathematical scenarios. With daily opportunities to tackle such challenges, the connectedness of numerical topics, logical thought process, and the need for accuracy and team-work have become even more appealing to my meticulous mind.
However, the diversity of the Roedean curriculum and experience has not allowed my academic interests to be limited to a single subject. With cross-curricular projects in Grade 8 and 9 and participating in the Wits Integrated Science and Commerce Competition in Grade 11, I have realised my desire to pursue a multi-disciplinary career path that potentially combines Mathematics and Physics and Geography and Spanish.

My future aspirations have also been influenced by Roedean’s strong emphasis on community service, opportunities that have exposed me to a variety of relevant social issues within the South African context. As the head of the Rotary Interact Club in 2017, working with and fundraising for the Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital inspired all three of my Matric research projects in Geography, Biology, and Life Orientation. I learned a lot about the poor management of the public healthcare system and hope to engage with this issue in the long term by using my studies of Mathematics and /or Actuarial Science to design a healthcare model that is more efficient and accessible to people from all socio-economic backgrounds.

The things I value the most about Roedean are its active and unified community structure and passionate school spirit. Spontaneous ‘jam’ sessions and our envied war cries at inter-school events bear testimony to the rare sisterhood that has been established. The staff and girls celebrate cultural diversity and our debates are enriched by a variety of perspectives. With pride in a shared identity and with shared aspirations to improve the school environment for all, Roedean has taught me what is needed for a community to thrive in a progressive 21st-century setting.

I am extremely grateful for the international opportunities I have had, attending two Round Square conferences with other delegates from more than 50 countries, going on exchange to Australia, and travelling to Argentina for a 5-week Spanish immersion. These experiences have broadened my knowledge of different cultures, allowed me to gain more independence, and made me even more appreciative of the skills and knowledge I have acquired through my unique education.

During my time at Roedean, the Best School of All, I have had a very holistic and enriching experience that has significantly shaped my values and future aspirations. The endless opportunities in the academic, sporting, cultural, and global spheres have equipped me to tackle any challenge in our fast-paced modern world.

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Since 2009, Thinking Skill have been an integral part of the curriculum, preparing pupils for the challenges of higher education and life itself. We strive to prepare our girls to lead ‘life of significance’ in a world of exponential change. Roedean is the only school in SA to be accredited as a Thinking School from Grades 0-12.