Edith Lam

Ambition: to study Mathematics at universityEdith 250w

Leaving Hong Kong and a new start

‘I am finishing my fifth year at St George’s having started as a boarder in Upper 4 when I was 14 years old. I‘m from Hong Kong. My parents both work for the Hong Kong Police Force and a work colleague recommended St George’s to them. My parents wanted to move me from my school in Hong Kong as I wasn’t focusing on my studies and they thought I might be more suited to a different environment. I found my old school quite stressful and very competitive. It was similar to an international school with some subjects taught in English, and I had the option of studying the IB or the Hong Kong Certificates.

‘I was happy to be sent to school here. I had visited Scotland with my school a couple of years earlier, so I knew a little about what to expect when I first arrived. Looking back on it now, I would say that the environment here is more relaxed and the teaching style is very different from home. My teachers know me, and they are very kind and helpful. In Hong Kong, everyone feels under pressure and is expected to study 24/7. In Hong Kong the curriculum is very narrow with not much on offer beyond the academics. There is little interaction between teachers and students; you learn by memorising and repeating. Here the learning style is very different. I have time to absorb the information and to understand what I am learning. I feel that I am now more likely to reach my full potential.

Maths is my subject

‘At St George’s I have loved my Maths. This was not the case in Hong Kong, where I was falling behind my classmates. For my Advanced Highers, I have studied Pure Maths, Mechanics and Statistics. I am going to study Maths at the University of St Andrews and I’m interested in Engineering, Coding, AI and the likes of Big Data, Tesla and NASA.

Opportunities and growing up

‘Being over here and close to Europe, I have taken full advantage of all the school trips, visiting Germany, Iceland, Spain and Italy with my school friends. Music has played a large part in my life at school, and I am in the school Choir, Orchestra, Jazz Band and Concert Band. I play the guitar and electric bass.

‘I have made friendships that will last me a lifetime. It is not a big school, and everyone knows one another. I’ve learnt to speak up for myself and to try everything on offer. Living in the boarding house with more than 40 other girls has made me more independent. I have become more sociable and tolerant, accepting other people as they are. Moving to St George’s has been a real game-changer for me.’