What’s your name?

My name is Flavia and I’ve just completed my VCE with an ATAR score of 98.85 [47 for Italian].

How old are you?

I’m 18 years old.

What VCE subjects did you study?

I studied English, global politics, legal studies, health and human development, Italian and business management.

What was your favourite subject?

Global politics was my favourite subject because I’m interested in global current affairs and politics and I believe that it’s an important subject when it comes to gaining knowledge of the events and trends that characterise this particular moment in history.

The world has become more connected through globalisation; it’s important to be well-informed because international issues also concern us.

That’s what inspired me to continue studying this subject, as well as law, at university.

Why did you study Italian? What do you like most about the language?

I chose to study Italian because my family is Italian, and the language is an important aspect of my cultural identity.

I want to continue speaking Italian with my family, particularly my grandparents.

I hope my children will also learn this wonderful language, and that our Italian identity stays strong.

What’s the biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge with learning Italian is the grammar.

I learnt Italian by listening to and speaking with my parents from when I was a baby – I didn’t learn the grammar until much later.

What interests you most about Italy?

When I went to Italy, the thing that struck me the most was the lifestyle of young people – it’s completely different from here, as are social interactions.

School life is also very different there (I spent a semester of primary school in Casteggio).

How was your experience studying in Italy?

I went to Italy in 2010, when I was nine years old.

It was an incredible experience; I stayed with my grandparents for six months and lived like a real Italian child.

I noticed that the schoolwork was at a much higher level there, and that students develop a strong work ethic from a young age.

I’m still in contact with my school friends and I consider Italy as my second home.

What are your goals for the future?

This year I’ll begin studying a double degree in law and global studies at Monash University.

I’ll go back to Italy in February to visit my grandparents, then travel to Asia.

In the future, I’d like to complete a semester in Italy and undertake internships in different countries around the world.

I’d like to pursue a career in which I can help those in need by defending their human rights.

How does it feel to be Dux (the highest-scoring VCE student of the year) of Sacred Heart Girls’ College?

To be honest, I’m still in shock.

I didn’t expect to get such a high ATAR score and it’s all still a little surreal.

I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to study at a good school with great teachers, and I’m honoured to be Dux.

What advice do you have for students completing their VCE this year?

It’s very important to maintain a balanced lifestyle during your final year.

Studying is important, but it’s also crucial to make time for your social life, work and sports.

I worked a lot this year and became a manger at KFC, I got my licence, and I also caught up with friends every weekend.

My advice is to study lots, work hard and have lots of fun, using your time wisely.

It’s also good to set an ambitious goal you’d like to achieve.