Posts Tagged ‘A levels’

The final push

Posted: October 19, 2015 in Exams, Motivation, Resilience

Dear JC2 students,

This morning as I was walking across the quadrangle, I looked up and noticed the count down chart that said A level exams is 17 days away. I can’t believe how much time has gone by! Some of you, right now, may feel more prepared than others; some of you may have been chewing through your nails; and some of you may already be making plans to repeat next year cos you feel like there’s just no way you can be ready in time. Whichever the case, this IS the final lap and I wanted to wish you well. I’ve met all of you at the resilience workshop this year and hope that some of the stuff that your teachers and I have shared will support you in this time. A couple of students have requested that I put up the story of the alumni student I talked about during the workshop, so here it is.


That was way back in 2012 and I just liked the story so much because it speaks so much truth. It IS true that YJC students are deemed the underdogs and it IS also true that that doesn’t make anything impossible if you work hard. That was the whole tenet of the workshop, really, that hard work is one of the strongest predictor for success. When things work out for you, I hope that you’d write back to me and let me know your story as well, so I can use it to encourage your juniors. When, not if.

Martin Luther King once said, ‘We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope’. Whatever disappointments or setbacks you may have encountered up to this point that makes you feel like you are not good enough, or that you can’t, don’t let that trip you up and keep on going, keep on hoping. 🙂

Ms Joan

It’s THE day. The nail-biting day when students come back to receive their A level results. While I’ve told students that results are not everything, I can’t help but feel nervous on their behalf. When you’ve put in two years (sometimes three) of hard work, naturally you’d hope that your results turn out well. So as with most results release day, today was a mix of sweet and bitter. It’s so good to see some students’ efforts pay off but what about those who got middle of the road results like CCD/D or DDD/D or EEE/E? Technically you have a full cert but fall short of the mark for NTU/NUS/SMU/SUTD and yet is not eligible to repeat JC2 with YJ in 2015. What are the options left open for you?

The answer is rather many (the nerves got to my grammar). We just need to look and broaden our perspectives. I read this article just today on alternatives for students who didn’t do well for A levels. Some of the things the writer listed really surprised me like I didn’t know about NYP’s course specifically for A level graduates and how you can graduate with a degree in 4 years with that course. I also didn’t know that guys in NS can bring their A level notes up to Mt Biang in Brunei and study in the jungle and still get into NUS! So please do check out that article.

Yet the other thing that struck me is the fact that while having a nice looking A level cert may give you a legs up in further education or career options, the quality of our life; how happy we will be; how ‘successful’ life in the future look like really really really (x infinity) don’t depend on the As and Bs. I read this article (again today…today is article day) that talks about 10 Singaporeans who shows us that the ‘A’ Levels aren’t everything in life. The common thread I think in all the stories of people featured is the fact that they had to take different routes and detours but none of them gave up hope, or gave up trying.

And that’s my hope for all of you out there. Whatever results you got today, know that life is much more than the alphabets on your cert. You just never know what the future may be like. As long as you don’t condemn yourself and keep keeping on (again bad grammar), I think you’d be okay. 🙂

The value of looking back

Posted: October 18, 2013 in Motivation
Tags: ,

Congratulations JC2s on your graduation! I remember when I graduated from JC I was mostly glad that I don’t have to sing Mari Kita everyday anymore. I don’t even remember if I thanked my teachers properly…aiyoh terrible! Anyways, I asked a JC2 student last week looking back at the 2 years that he has spent in YJC, whether he thought that he could have actually gotten to this point of graduating and taking his A levels in 20 days. He said he didn’t think that he could have endured these wretched 2 years and more than once had thought of quitting. But he didn’t, and he stuck it through and I affirmed him for that.

I think there is value in looking back and i’m sure if you do that, you’ll see that all of you guys displayed qualities of perseverance and grit to have gone through the last couple of years in JC. Sometimes we take things for granted and give ourselves too little credit! Surely if you managed to stick through the last couple of years, I believe the final lap towards your A levels would not be too hard a task to undertake and I wish you guys all the very best for your A levels! 🙂