Scholarship “absolutely deserved”
- 11 February 2022
Eighteen-year-old Golden Bay High School NCEA Level 3 graduate Manu Bourgeois is one of three students heading to the University of Canterbury this month with the financial support of the Sir Wallace Rowling Scholarship.
Network Tasman Charitable Trust established the scholarship in memory of the former Prime Minister of New Zealand, who was also a Network Tasman Trust Chairman and Director of Tasman Energy.
Golden Bay High School principal Linda Tame said, as joint winner of the school’s Charlton Plate for Citizenship, and the Principal’s Cup for Outstanding Leadership, Manu absolutely deserved to be recognised.
“In my 20 years as principal, he is one of the top leaders I’ve seen, a truly remarkable young man. He’s got a real knack for knowing the difference between right and wrong; he’s provided positive guidance to younger students when it comes to decision making.”
Linda said she nominated Manu because he had made a well-rounded contribution to the school community, which gave him a stronger chance of winning the scholarship, which aims to recognise students who not only do well academically but also demonstrate they are good citizens. She said Manu also excelled in several sports and that his fellow students admired him.
“There was no ball last year because of Covid-19, so the Level 3 students had an end-of year dinner at the Wholemeal Café. One of the students stood up and publicly thanked Manu for his contribution to the school community, to rousing applause.”
Manu grew up in Golden Bay after being born in Auckland, not long after Manu’s French father and British mother immigrated to New Zealand after they met in French Polynesia. The family moved to Golden Bay when he was a baby and he has enjoyed living here, although life hasn’t always been easy.
“When Mum died a few years ago, it felt like a huge piece was missing from the puzzle. My life didn’t feel complete without her. I haven’t always been successful at school. I had to put in countless hours of work to make it to where I am today. Mum taught me so much and provided me with a lot of guidance. I know that she wanted me to keep going, be happy, and do things I love. This knowledge has fuelled and motivated me to continue studying and aim for greater heights.”
Manu is looking forward to being as actively involved in student activities at university as he has been at high school. “I’m looking at joining a number of university clubs and want to play badminton, basketball and compete in long distance running. I’ve got four friends from the Bay who are also going to study engineering at UC but I’m also excited about meeting new people.”
Linda said the Sir Wallace Rowling Scholarship scholarship provided a significant opportunity for students in the Bay.
“It can be terribly expensive for our students who are going away to tertiary studies. Anything we can do to help, we do.”
“There are quite a lot of expenses and hidden costs,” says Manu, who will be living on campus this year and says he will use the scholarship to help pay for his accommodation.