FOR many year 12 students across the state, yesterday marked the culmination of their school lives.
The gruelling past few weeks sitting for the infamous High School Certificate exams, have come to an end.
And now a world of endless opportunity and freedom lies at their feet.
The Port News caught up with some St Columba Anglican School students to see what finishing meant to them.
“I feel really, really good,” said Georgia Brown moments after completing her last exam in Visual Arts. “I just feel free – finally. It’s been an intense last few weeks.”
Ms Brown said most people were able to maintain a pretty good balance between social life and study, although she may have been a bit of a recluse.
The bubbly student said she could not wait to go on her gap year and do a backpacking trip around Europe.
Morgan Carter said sitting one of the last exams on the HSC calendar made it a bit harder to stay motivated.
“It was so hard to concentrate through that exam,” she said. “Especially knowing that everyone else had finished. I just kept thinking, when is this going to end?”
Claire Stephenson agreed: “Everyone was out last night and we were studying,” she said. “This morning I really couldn’t get motivated until about two hours before my exam to study, normally I’d be getting up at seven.”
An ecstatic Kira Gregson said her eyes were set on the future.
“I’m very happy,” she said. “Really, I’m thinking about all the things I can do now.”
The girls said they were looking forward to small priviledges like guilt free sleep ins and going to the movies, or spending time with friends.
Acting head of secondary school Geoff Lancaster said students would now be embarking on a new phase of their lives.
“It marks the end of their school career,” Mr Lancaster said. “It really opens up a lot of opportunities for them and I hope they continue to make the most of those.”
HSC results will be available to students through the internet and SMS as of Wednesday, December 19.