On Thursday the 19th of May three of our Head Students had the opportunity to participate in HeadzUp Day. Usually this day is one big day at Waikato University that involves over 400 Head Students from the Waikato and Bay of Plenty. However due to COVID it was split up into multiple smaller events held at St Peters Cambridge.

The day was a bit of a mystery to us as the only instruction we had was to bring a musical instrument. We spent our day with 6 other schools (St. Johns, St. Peters, Te Awamutu College, Cambridge High School, Melville High School and Nga Taiatea Wharekura). The day was filled with different types of activities to help develop our leadership skills and understand ourselves better as leaders. We started off the day with some getting to know each other games in which we stated some positives in our roles and some challenges we have been facing; the most common being COVID as it has prevented us from having assemblies or big events this year for the most part. Then we had a guest speaker, Kristie Baillie, ex-New Zealand 400m runner and former Head Girl at Morrinsville College. Kristie told us about her struggles with failure and pressure, and helped us understand how she has been able to deal with them throughout her life.

Some key points that we took away from her talk was that success isn’t a straight line, it comes with ups, downs and zig zags all over the place, however if you keep on trying your best and get over the obstacles you’ll make it. A second really good take away from her talk was that courage is like a muscle. Muscles grow bigger and better when they are pushed to their limits often. This is a metaphor as the more you go out of your comfort zone and use your courage the easier it becomes. This is very important as you face these types of situations every day in small things such as putting your hand up in class. Our instruments came into play with us leaders getting split into two and having to make a musical performance. Then we ended the day with a little fun as we used playdough to show what our goals for the year were. 

It was a really good opportunity to improve our leadership skills as well as seeing the different perspectives that our 22 leaders have around their roles as Head Students. The skills learnt from this day will be used by us Head Students throughout 2022, allowing the next 7 months to be more enjoyable for both us and the school. Being able to network with other students in similar positions helped us to see how different events are held in other schools and how successful they are, and having this knowledge could help us when planning future events for Hillcrest later in the year. 

– Written by Giorgia Lawson (Head Student 2022)