YEAR 12 REFLECTIONS – Jasmine Andrews
2022 College Co-Captain, Jasmine has long been passionate about the natural world and now hopes to become an Ecologist. Known for her calm, reliable, and caring nature, Jas says keeping a balance between her studies, outside interests, and relationships was the key to her VCE success.
Reflecting on her secondary school experience, Jas found the nurturing environment and strong sense of community at Mater Christi incredible to be part of.
In her early years, Jas was a perfectionist, scared to make a mistake and putting pressure on herself to get everything right. But over time, she learnt to approach tasks with an eagerness to learn rather than focusing on the final score.
“I used to put a lot of pressure on myself to complete tasks, exams, and speeches without any flaws. One day, I realised how unrealistic this was when speaking with Mrs Fitz-Gerald. She told me that sometimes you won’t get the marks you hoped for, and that’s OK. This really stuck with me and changed the way I approach things.”
In Years 11 and 12, Jas tried to ensure she kept a good balance between school and other pursuits to maintain her motivation and avoid burnout.
“I always put aside time for work, hobbies, volunteering, leadership and being with family and friends throughout Year 12. At first, I was worried taking time out would affect my studies, but I do believe it is what allowed me to do well.”
Indeed, volunteering from an early age cemented Jasmine’s passion for flora and fauna and led to her ongoing desire to work in conservation.
In Year 9, Jas joined the Friends of Sassafras Creek (FOSC) – a group of interested community members who work to protect and enhance the Sassafras Creek Nature Conservation Reserve.
Later, as part of her Personal Project in Year 10, she researched and wrote a paper on fauna survey work she had conducted in the area. She went on to edit her findings, with the help of Latrobe University Research Officer Alex Maisey, for publication in The Victorian Naturalist Magazine.
“That project taught me so much, not only about the natural world and the pressures it faces but also the importance of community in overcoming these challenges.”
This year, Jasmine is studying Wildlife and Conservation Biology at Deakin University. She hopes to take on opportunities as a seasonal park ranger or work on volunteer programs overseas to gain experience with a view to becoming an Ecologist who provides advice and collaborates with farmers and organisations to improve biodiversity.
We wish her all the best and look forward to hearing more about her journey!