My name is Thomas ter Beek and I am in my last year at Hamilton Boys’ High School. My parents moved from the Netherlands 20 years ago, which means I have had the privilege of growing up in a bilingual environment and have had the opportunity to visit the Netherlands several times to visit family.
I am deeply passionate about the outdoors - I am always planning hiking trips with friends in my spare time. Last summer I completed three Great Walks. I firmly believe that spending time in nature is one of the most freeing experiences, as it allows one to connect with the beauty of nature and to test the limits of their physical and mental capabilities. When I am not hiking, I train for half marathons, work on my golf swing, and go mountain biking with friends.
Aside from my love for all things outdoors, I am an academic nut at heart. I am a member of my school’s academic committee, and have achieved success in my exams, having been awarded top in New Zealand for CIE AS Language and Literature, and a History Scholarship as a year 12. I attribute much of my academic success to the support I have received over the years from my parents, teachers, and friends. Thus, I have an interest in helping others to meet their academic potential. I am a senior mentor at my school’s refugee support center, supporting resettled students with their studies, and allowing them to feel welcome and valued at the school.
I plan to study medicine next year in either New Zealand or in Australia, with the intention of becoming a surgeon. As a doctor, I hope to better the lives of as many people as possible by working hard to become the best surgeon I can be, and by eventually starting my own practice so that more people are able to access critically needed healthcare. I also hope to start an additional organisation where I can facilitate a pathway for underprivileged students to study medicine and experience the freeing impact of the outdoors.
I am a deeply caring person who will go out of their way to help another and will always lend an ear to anyone struggling to overcome a difficult situation in their life. With this, I conclude with the inspiring author Woodrow Wilson’s quote:
The ear of the leader must ring with the voices of the people.