International Student Profiles
For many years, Auckland Grammar School has welcomed international students as a valued part of the School's community.
Representing a wide range of nationalities, our international students comprise 5% of the School's roll and we very much appreciate the rich cultural diversity and contributions they bring to daily life at Grammar.
Current student stories:
2019 Prefect Shunxing (Daniel) Shi received top marks - 100% - for his AS Product Design coursework component. He is also a member of the Scholars group, Proceres Grammatici, was named the 2019 Captain of Fencing (becoming the first international student to do so), and was the leader of both the Headmaster's International Committee and the International Social Committee.
Daniel was selected as part of the New Zealand squad of eight students to compete at the Young Physicists Competition in Poland. The team were first in the Auckland Regional tournament, second at the New Zealand National tournament, and he was also the first international student officially selected and recorded as a member of the New Zealand National Team for the International Young Physicists Tournament, where the teamgained a Silver medal.
"Grammar has given me many positive experiences, has made me work smart and to explore the unknown and understand the beauty of life. I now understand my own limitations, and I am grateful so I can keep a positive mind-set for future improvements.
"Thank you Grammar for making me who I am. I look up to the stars in the sky with respect to all the great people, not because they have world recognitions, nor because I want to live their life. My life is also a legend, for I have altered the boundary between what was possible and what wasn't. I strive to make our community better, even if it will never be officially recognised. Therefore I understand how difficult it was for these great men and women to be at their level, so the respect comes naturally."
Form 7 student Sanghoo Kim competed at the 2019 New Zealand Robotics Olympiad. Tasked with building a robot from scratch within a three-hour time limit, Sanghoo received Gold in the Line Tracer category and Bronze for his creativity.
Sanghoo was also selected as a member of the New Zealand team to attend the International Robotics Olympiad in Thailand in December.
"I started at Auckland Grammar this year and in that short time, I have already learnt a lot. There have been many opportunities provided by the School for students, and ongoing support and care given by the teachers. Although adjusting to a new school had its challenges, the teachers helped to make the transition as smooth as possible. I also made friends early on, which contributed to my positive experience at Grammar.
"Growing up, I had always been interested in programming and robotics. It was a hobby I invested time in when I lived in Korea. Leaving that behind when I moved to NZ was difficult, but to my surprise, I was able to pursue my passion through the Robot Olympiad. This event brought me great joy and I even managed to place third in the competition. Once I graduate from Grammar, my dream is to study robotics at a good university and become a programmer in this field."
Form 6 student Yifei Wang (pictured below receiving his swimming medals) is a member of the School's swimming squad. The team competed at the 2019 New Zealand Secondary Schools Swimming Championships in Hamilton, beginning the week prior to Senior Exams. The team performed outstandingly well to finish third in New Zealand overall and win the trophy for the top school in relays.
"Starting in Form 3, I felt the environment is different. At first I felt like I didn't fit into this new environment but the style of teaching and the students helped me a lot - this is one of the reasons I choose to attend Grammar. The variety of activities that can be chosen attracts a lot of international students and I am glad to be a part of it. Overall, my school life has been good and I am looking forward to what will come in my final year."
Old Boys stories
A large number of our alumni, known as Old Boys, choose tertiary study options here in New Zealand as well as Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Harrison Wang '14, a former Grammar School student from Shanghai, is one of two Auckland Grammar School students who have gained admission to Oxford University in 2019.
Wang is looking forward to staying connected to the Grammar community. "Grammar has given me many opportunity to be a better candidate for Oxford University. I learnt how to be more confident as a member of the School's debating team, and I gained practical leadership skills through initiating a free lunchtime tutoring programme.
Wang provides the following tips learned through his own experience for successful studying:
- Study should always come first, above extracurricular activities, sport or music;
- Take the time to research your ideal university and start the process early in Form 6. Ask Student Services to help you if you need it; and
- Aim for balance and enjoy yourself while you are working towards your goals, because Grammar has so much to offer.
Ba Quang Huy (Matthew) Le '14 from Vietnam enrolled at Grammar as an international student, beginning in Term 2. Having missed Term 1, he dedicated himself to quickly advancing his English skills.\
Showing a real determination of spirit, he embraced the opportunities at Grammar, taking full advantage of the rich learning environment.
Le has begun an undergraduate degree in Communications with a major in Marketing on a full scholarship at the University of Auckland. Le additionally achived three NZQA Scholarship Awards and as such is recognised on Auckland Grammar's 2018 Scholars Board.
Bruce Ng '13, from Hong Kong, is an avid fencer who saw a great opportunity to further develop his fencing skills. Being at Auckland Grammar gave him the drive he needed and he was top in New Zealand for the Under 17 grade. Click here to read his full story.
Bruce Ng with his fencing trophy on the School's front steps
Thai student Micky Chiewvatsagonchai '13 was at Grammar for five year. He and his twin brother Macky came from Bangkok in an effort to improve their language skills. Both students have accomplished this and have also advanced several streamlined classes, making great academic progress. Micky played football, table tennis, badminton and futsal to keep active and was a Prefect in 2017. Click here to read his story.
Micky Chiewvatsagonchai with other Auckland Grammar Thai students
Chinese national Matthew Duan '11 transferred from The High School Affiliated to Renmin University (RDFZ) in China to complete his high school education at Auckland Grammar. He was able to transition very easily, worked hard to achieve exceptional academic results, and is now studying medicine at the University of Melbourne, Australia. Click here to read his story.
Matthew Duan works on a science experiment in class
Also from China is Old Boy Andrew Huang '11, who was the third boy in his family to study at Auckland Grammar, as they consider it the best School in New Zealand. Andrew studied the Cambridge stream (CIE) and was heavily involved in the School's media group, a co-curricular group where students are involved in filming or photographing school events and sports games. His advice? "Focus on what you like to do!" Read his story here.
Andrew Huang was part of the School's media group
Japanese student Genki Miyauchi '10 was at Auckland Grammar for three years (Form 5 to Form 7) and was a very intellectual student. He worked hard and helped many other students. He was rewarded for his leadership and commitment to Auckland Grammar by being recognised as a School Prefect in 2014. Genki is now studying at the Kings College of London. Read his story here.
Japnese student Genki Miyauchi with Headmaster Mr Tim O'Connor
Taiki Sakurai '11 came to Auckland Grammar from Japan as part of a year-long exchange from Ritsumeikan Uji. He studied a range of topics while at the School including Biology, Business Studies, Mathematics, Japanese and ESOL to help improve his English. Taiki loved the diversity of Grammar and he says the experience helped him develop more self-confidence. Click here to read more.
Taiki Sakurai on the front steps of Auckland Grammar School
Coming from a small town in Taiwan, Old Boy Jimmy Wang '11 and his parents were keen for him to study abroad to immerse himself in a new culture. While at Grammar, Jimmy participated in many activities, including table tennis, badminton, Amnesty International, Habitat for Humanity projects, and the Duke of Edinburgh programme. Click here to read his story.
Jimmy Wang (third from right) with members of the International Department
Perth Kosaipat '10 from Thailand had a fantastic time at Auckland Grammar. Well-liked by staff and his classmates, Perth's photographic art was used as part of the annual Art Expo, which was extremely well received. In Form 5, he received the Geoffrey Leonard Perry Memorial Award for diligence and effort and was top in Accounting in Form 6. Perth is now doing further tertiary study in Singapore. Click here to read more.
Thai student Perth Kosaipat with Headmaster Mr Tim O'Connor
Hailing from South Korea, Donggue Lee '11 achieved great academic success in the five years he spent at Grammar. He received an Outstanding Cambridge Learner Award for Top in the World 1st = in Mathematics for his Cambridge International Exam at AS Level in 2013. Donggue was also selected as a Prefect in 2015.
The School's International department were very proud of Donggue's success, "not only does he focus on his own academic progress, but he exemplifies the spirit of the Grammar Way of humility, pride and commitment by making a positive contribution to the School through organising a senior student tutoring group for international students". Click here to read more.
Donggue Lee was a School Prefect in 2015, a proud achievement as an International student
Also from South Korea, Michael Seo '11 wanted to study at Auckland Grammar because of the School's reputation in being competitive in sports and having a robust academic system. He was involved in the Football club and was a team member of the 3rd XI soccer team as a centre-mid fielder. Click here to read more.
Michael Seo playing football at Auckland Grammar School
Argentine student Tomas Forner '13, hailing from a small town in Buenos Aires, came to Auckland Grammar School on a one-term exchange to play rugby - and immensely enjoyed it. He came to improve his rugby skills but he also studied hard and focused on other areas of School life. Click here to read more.
Argentine student Tomas Forner (second from left) with other International students on Rangitoto Island