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Why I pushed for a 95+ ATAR when I needed a 63 for my course

I graduated in 2018 with an ATAR of 96.1, a score that I didn't think possible in my early years of high school. When it comes to talents, I wouldn't call myself a naturally smart person, so this took a lot of hard work and dedication. Sometimes I look back and think to myself whether all the effort that I invested into VCE was worth it considering I ended up doing a course that required an ATAR of 63. However, as I reflect on my two years of VCE I am confident that I wouldn't change a thing about how I went about the year.

For many, it might sounds crazy but Year 12 was my favourite year of school! This isn't just because of the activities outside of studying, but I actually enjoyed the study process itself. I wouldn't call myself a nerd at all but for me I realised throughout the year that the process of pushing my mental capability and integrating effective disciplines had a deep satisfaction. I've never had a year where I have been so productive as I woke up early, got study done, and even went for runs. This was the perfect way to set the tone for the day, then after school, I'd go for tutoring or go to the gym before having dinner and sleeping early.

So you might be asking, "why did you put in all this effort when you didn't need too?" Here are a few reasons why I believe getting a good ATAR even if you don't need it is worth it.

You never know what the future holds and how you might change your mind.

Nothing is ever certain when it comes to your future, your desires and ambitions can change over time. I know of people who did just enough for the course they initially thought they'd like to do, but then realised some time later that they wanted to do something else which required a higher ATAR; a score they were perfectly capable of.

Hard work is not something that is exclusive to VCE, you need it everywhere in life.

There is a quote that says, "small choices become actions, actions become habits, and habits become our way of life." If you can overcome the temptation to be lazy and procrastinate during VCE then you're setting yourself up to do well in University or Work. The truth about school is that most of the content you learn might not be very applicable to life outside of school. For example, I've never used the Quadratic Formula since I've graduated. However, your ability to think critically, study effectively and apply yourselves to tasks will be use from a day to day basis.

You only have one shot at getting your best ATAR.

There's never going to be another few years like VCE so give it your best crack! When you're feeling unmotivated, learn to rely on habits and disciplines. All your years of schooling have built up to this so you might as well finish up your time at school by showing yourself what you're capable of.

- Jeremy Choo

If you need help then our tutors at Bridge Tutoring would love to help you with more than just subject content. We're here to help keep you accountable and encourage you to accomplish what you are capable of.

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