JOANNA Lusty has been picked from high school students statewide to be one of a select group of students who get experience being a departmental director for the Department of Education and Communities.
The Tenterfield High School year 10 student was among around a dozen local students encouraged by deputy principal Peter Willis to apply for the honour.
Joanna said she was surprised to make the shortlist determined in Tamworth, let alone make the final selection.
The other student selected from this region attends Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School.
The selection was based on the students’ response to why the experience would be a good opportunity for them, how the applicant has helped their school in the past, and their interests. Joanna said she responded that she was open-minded and the experience would be a great learning opportunity for her.
She was a member of the Student Representative Council in year 8 and has participated in several leadership conferences. She puts her hand up to volunteer for anything going on at school, and is keen to be involved in debating and public speaking activities.
Outside school hours she is following in the volunteering footsteps of parents Wayne and Rose, helping out with Lions Club activities in an unofficial capacity whenever she can, and with the Salvation Army’s annual toy run and fetes at Tenterfield Hospital and Millrace.
Her focus when she goes to Sydney at the end of the month, however, is student welfare. To that end her assignment for the day will be with Student Welfare acting director Robyn Bale.
“I want to say what high school is like from a student’s point of view,” Joanna said.
“What it’s like in school is not necessarily what’s reflected in surveys.”
Joanna is also concerned with the welfare of teachers and staff.
“Staff do go through a lot,” she said.
Joanna will fly down to Sydney on Tuesday, hopefully finding time to catch up with her brother before her director duties start on Wednesday.