Heathdale flower 08th March 2024

A Family-Inspired Journey into Neuroscience

In 2020, we interviewed Rithica for our school magazine, Aurora, about the neuroscience course she completed during remote learning. She shared with our community her desire to enter the field of medicine in honour of her brother who acquired an intellectual disability when he was young. In 2023, Rithica made her mark as our Dux. It has been such a privilege to journey with Rithica and help her achieve her dreams, which are now firmly in sight.

Heathdale flower

"I was very excited and proud to find out I was the Dux of 2023. It was something I was hoping to achieve all year and so receiving the news was a very key moment of my school life and helped validate the amount of effort I put into my studies.

Being a very studious and focused person throughout school, I’d always tried my best academically and achieved consistently over the years, so being the Dux was something I aspired to as I approached Year 12. It felt like the perfect way to end my journey at Heathdale.

Heathdale has been a great place for my development and has allowed me to learn and grow in many different ways. All the staff I have encountered over the years were extremely supportive, encouraged me in my pursuits and were always willing to help whenever I needed it. I’ve had teachers who have gone above and beyond to make sure I understood content and had enough practice assessments, so I felt as confident as possible before any assessments.

The environment at Heathdale has always been a really positive and kind one and has also allowed me to grow in my faith due to the Christian education. The services in place for support, such as Student Welfare, were a comfort for me as I always knew that I had someone to talk to if I was struggling. The Careers team also were instrumental in supporting me to discover different courses and pathways to achieve my future career goals.

I was always interested in science and medicine from a young age and my brother, who has an intellectual disability and epilepsy, particularly inspired me. When I was four years old, he had a brain surgery to help reduce his seizures and when I went to visit him afterwards, the surgery and brain began to interest me a lot. Reading more about the brain and its capabilities over the years inspired me to study Neuroscience as it is such an advanced and ever-changing field that can aid the lives of millions of people, like my brother. My family has been very supportive of my career goals and have always encouraged me to follow my passions so that ultimately, I can achieve my goal of helping people the way that the surgeons helped my brother.

For future Year 12s, my advice is to set out realistic goals at the start of the year and to work towards these goals over the year to achieve them. Having clear goals, such as specific study scores you’re working towards and planning how to achieve these scores according to your best learning style, allows you to have a clear direction of where you want to go with your studies and keeps you motivated. Being motivated and consistent in your efforts throughout the year is going to help you achieve academic excellence and achieve whatever you have set for yourself.

Also, plan out your time so you are able to give yourself enough time for studying, breaks, extracurricular activities and time spent with family and friends. This balance helps you to not burn out and allows you to enjoy your Year 12 life to the fullest, since it is your last year of school.

All the best to the Class of 2024!"