End of the Higher School Certificate at St Mary's College, Gunnedah

LEAPING FOR JOY: St Mary's students Maria Ortiz and Leah Broekman are thrilled to be free of the Higher School Certificate.
LEAPING FOR JOY: St Mary's students Maria Ortiz and Leah Broekman are thrilled to be free of the Higher School Certificate.

Year 12 students at St Mary’s College are now officially finished the Higher School Certificate (HSC).

Nine students put down their pens at lunchtime on Monday after sitting exams for Food Technology, Spanish and computer studies.

Maria Ortiz and Leah Broekman are among the six students who completed the Food Technology exam and felt that it went well.

“I feel like we were very well prepared for it,” Maria said.

Leah said the exam was “easier than I thought”.

“They didn’t throw some of the questions I thought they would,” she said.

Both students are “relieved” to be free of exams and glad they can finally relax.

“It's just such a weight off the shoulders,” Maria said.

“I’m looking forward to reading a book I want to read.”

Leah said there was a “big stigma” before the HSC trials but “all of the exams I did were achievable, if you studied”.

“It’s sort of like a build-up, then nothing,” she said.

Maria said now that she has no restraints, she actually feels a bit anxious.

“I’m getting really scared,” she said.

“What are we going to do? There’s no schedule.”

Maria does have at least one end goal to focus on – deciding whether to do a bachelor of arts and law or a Bachelor of Health and Physical Education (Dean’s Scholar) at the University of Wollongong in 2019.

Leah will also be taking a gap year and is waiting to hear whether she will get early entry for nursing at the University of New England. She will leave for the Philippines on November 22 for a Catholic Mission Immersion trip.

The last exam at Gunnedah High School will finish on Tuesday afternoon.