Barbara Agnew is a good judge of character, she ought to be, because she is the Principal of Queen’s High School, so when Ms Agnew informed the OMCT Committee that a young lady called Scarlett Rogers was arguably one of the best students ever to grace the lauded halls of her school, they were suitably impressed. The Committee were not to be disappointed when actually they met Scarlett either as, for one so young, she has an impressive list of accomplishments behind her. Her academic achievements have been exemplary, attaining both NCEA Level 1 and Level 2 with ‘Excellence’ endorsements and an extraordinary grade point average of 100%. She also received first prize in Physical Education and Top Scholar for Level 2. None of this went to her head though, and her genuinely humble and caring manner made her a favourite with students and teachers alike and, in 2019, both parties came together to elect her Head Girl of their prestigious school. Scarlett then set about representing Queen’s High students both at school and within the community. She organised the school’s formal, ran assemblies and open mornings, became a member of the Sports Council, and was Head of Prefects, while also excelling as a Year-9 Peer Support Leader.
Quite simply, Scarlett Rogers displays a maturity beyond her years, and she possesses a strong sense of community and justice. “Scarlett is a superb role model for the younger girls at Queen’s High School,” Ms Agnew told us. “She relates well to everyone – her peers, adults and younger children. She is an enabler of others and will support them to achieve things, even when they lose confidence. Scarlett is kind, caring and will go out of her way to ensure everyone is included. She will deliberately place herself with students that might otherwise be left out.”
A resident of Port Chalmers, Scarlett described how she had obtained a place at the University of Otago, where she intends to complete a Bachelor of Applied Science degree with a major in Physical Education and a minor in History – two subjects that she is extremely passionate about. Physical Education we could understand, but History? Why couple that subject with Phys. Ed. we asked her? Scarlett said, “History is a subject that never gets boring, as our world is so rich in incredible, fascinating, yet sometimes horrific, stories. It is terribly important that we understand the world in which we are living and how the world came to the place in which it finds itself today. Only by learning from our mistakes of the past can we calculate how to steer the world’s future course.”
A degree in Physical Education though is her main goal as Scarlett is a very active young lady. She enjoys running, tramping, snowboarding and surfing, and if that wasn’t enough, she also harbours a passion for dancing. A member of the Rasa School of Dance for twelve of her nineteen-years, Scarlett has danced competitively for seven years.
Upon the completion of her degree Scarlett intends to continue even further study to enable her to qualify as a teacher. She explained, “I have been inspired by my teachers my whole school life and I want to impact my own students in the way that I have been impacted by my teachers. My mother is also a teacher; she is a tremendous role model for me and I couldn’t think of a better way to live my own life.”
Beside her acknowledged achievements, it is her place of residence that allowed Scarlett to apply for the Port Chalmers Marine Lodge Bursary. Over a protracted period up to 2005, changes in maritime working practises finally forced the slowly diminishing, merchant marine-based, membership of the English Constitution Lodge to close its doors. Nevertheless, having loyally supported its local community since 1865, the remaining Lodge members refused to relinquish their ingrained practise of benevolence. The Lodge Rooms were sold for a considerable sum and the interest accrued from this money now provides the foundation for this annual stipend, that was specifically created to help fund the expenses of a worthy school leaver in the Port Chalmers area with their foray into further education.
Previous Port Chalmers Marine Lodge member, Rt.W.Bro. Mel Darling, outlined to Scarlett the history of the Lodge and how, through the gift of its yearly bursary its name lives on. The finale of the short presentation came when the OMCT Chairman, John Dennison handed the 5,000-dollar cheque to an obviously thrilled Scarlett Rogers.
Scarlett was accompanied to the presentation by her very proud mum, Nicole Rogers, and by her equally supportive boyfriend Tom. She told the assembled OMCT members, “I am so excited for the next chapter in my life to open.”
And we are thankful that we have been able to help Scarlett begin to turn that particular page in her personal ‘Book of Life.’
Port Chalmers Marine Lodge Bursary: email@example.com
Queens High School: https://www.queens.school.nz
What is Freemasonry: www.lodgestpatrick.co.nz