Om Shetty (10), of Queenstown, with some of his
certificates and medals. Photo by James Beech.
A gifted Queenstown Primary School pupil is well on the
way to achieving his ambition of becoming a doctor by amassing
a string of top results in transtasman exams.
Om Shetty, of Lake Hayes Estate, said he would be "pretty
excited and real proud" on December 9 when he went to
Auckland to receive his latest medal for scoring the highest
marks in computer skills for year 5 pupils sitting the
University of New South Wales' International Competitions and
Assessments for Schools (ICAS) exams.
"I really wanted to get it and I prepared quite well this
year," Om said yesterday.
"I do a couple of practice questions. Mum helps sometimes and
I read quite a bit."
Om said preparation and practice were the secrets behind his
academic success, with up to 45 minutes set aside for study
The Auckland-born boy has attended Queenstown Primary for the
past six years and finds time for cricket, swimming and art
as well as classes.
Om also earned high distinction grades in ICAS exams for
English - in which he was in the top 1% in New Zealand - plus
distinction in maths (placed in the top 2%), spelling (in the
top 7%) and science (top 4%), as well as a credit for writing
when he was placed in the top 14% in the country.
Om and three classmates formed the team which won the gold
medal at the Otago Daily Times Extra! Spelling Quiz for years
5 and 6 pupils during the winter.
His painting of a lighthouse was chosen for the front cover
of Tall Poppies, the magazine for members of the New Zealand
Association for Gifted Children.
Om's sporting achievements include selection for the Central
Otago representative years 5 and 6 cricket team and second
place in the 200m freestyle at the Otago Southland Early Bird
meeting held in Queenstown in September.
University and a medical career are in his sights.
"I want to be a neurosurgeon or cardiac surgeon. I really
want to be a doctor because they help people and you need a
real good education to be one."
School gifted and talented co-ordinator Maria Small said Om
was one of her top pupils in eight years of teaching.
"Om is a fantastic ambassador for our school, achieving
highly in all areas - academic, cultural and sporting. He
achieved a lot because of his perseverance and dedication, as
well as natural ability."