Oakhill excellence spreads far and wide
Oakhill School once again hosted a highly capable group of applicants for their annual scholarship examinations in early March. With nearly 60 learners in Grade 7 from a selection of local, national and international schools, these examinations were strongly contested.
Scholarships are awarded annually to children who excel in the scholarship process, which involves a rigorous programme of activities including a mathematics and English exam, prepared speech, lateral thinking exercises, creative and other dimensional thinking and an interview with senior Oakhill academic staff.
‘Enticing aspiring minds’
Head of school Jannie de Villiers commented, “We were thrilled with the high calibre of candidates attending and will be most pleased to award scholarships to attend Oakhill – to entice aspiring minds and expose them to the wonderful opportunities that our school has to offer.”De Villiers maintains that “whole child education happens in the broadest sense of the word at Oakhill”.
“This involves much more than the excellent academic standards we maintain. From Grades 000 to 12 we strive to ignite the imaginations of our pupils by encouraging them to explore and discover, question and create, and to experience the joy of learning.”
‘Joy of learning’
The school’s ethos of “joy of learning” is evident not only in Oakhill’s proven track record for a holistic and well-rounded education of learners, but also by the school leavers as they continue with much enthusiasm in their chosen paths.
Oakhill’s top art learner in 2017, Rebekah Utian, not only achieved six distinctions for matric last year and a 92% average for art, but she has also recently been awarded the prestigious art scholarship at Kenyon College, Ohio in the USA. Kenyon College is one of the finest liberal arts colleges in America. Similar to Oakhill in many ways, it is a small school where academic excellence goes hand in hand with a strong sense of community. Rebekah’s scholarship is worth $15 000 a year, renewable for four years.
Rebekah will be studying art history, arts management and journalism, and she dreams of having her “own articles published in the New York Times and being a curator of an internationally renowned art gallery such as Moma or Tate. Rebekah also intends to learn Spanish and Italian as soon as possible!
Says Rebekah, “I truly believe a genuine ‘Oakhill experience’ requires a certain level of spunk. The school has so much to offer – what you take from it is what you can get out of the experience. I will remain proud in saying that my roots are planted in Oakhill soil.”
Another 2017 matriculant, Bergen Pentz, also completed the year with six distinctions and will also be furthering her studies overseas. Bergen will be attending the University of Surrey in England where she will begin with a foundation year and start a degree in food science and microbiology in September.
In addition to those excelling in academics and the arts, Oakhill learners also continue to shine in sports across a wide variety of disciplines. Having received a golf scholarship, 2017 matriculant Kyle Solomon will be pursuing his golfing ambitions at Keiser University in West Palm Beach, Florida USA, where he will be studying a PGA golf management degree.
Understanding the importance of a great education and the opportunities it offers worldwide, Oakhill School’s world-famous Old Oak, Caspar Lee, is paying it forward. Lee received a scholarship to study at Oakhill for his high school years, and this year he launched the Caspar Lee Bursary to offer that same opportunity to a talented and deserving young learner, Indiphile Witbooi.
Superstar’s Oakhill start
At the young age of 23, Lee has certainly made a success of the dreams he once cultivated at Oakhill: he now has over 7.5-million YouTube followers, recently won the Social Media Superstar award at the 2018 Global Awards, and is the chief innovation officer at the Londonbased marketing agency Influencer. Lee launched the Caspar Lee Bursary in an announcement on his YouTube channel and to an audience of Oakhill learners via live streaming. “Oakhill supported my creativity, it helped me a lot with my education, and made me the person I am today,” he said.
Read more about Caspar’s journey in his autobiography Caspar Lee, a fun compilation by Caspar and his mother Emily Riordan Lee.
Almost 60 Grade 7 learners from a selection of local, national and international schools attended the recent scholarship exams at Oakhill School.
Rebekah Utian, pictured here after receiving Oakhill’s Pierre Dingley Art Award, is the recipient of the prestigious art scholarship to Kenyon College in Ohia, USA.
Oakhill’s Head of school Jannie de Villiers (right) with Indiphile Witbooi, the proud recipient of the Caspar Lee Bursary.
Former Oakhill learner Caspar Lee’s autobiography tells the humorous and interesting story of his journey to superstardom.