en-us Inspired by Yarra

Yrena Wang

YOG 2013

International Integration Aide

"I didn't know what life would be like, but quickly felt part of the Yarra Community."

Over the past 50 years Yarra has inspired students to pursue their passions and interests. Yarra Old Grammarian, Yrena Wang, Class of 2013, was an overseas student who left her home and family in China to join the School.

Before Yrena arrived in Australia, her usual school day began at 6.15am and ended around 9pm. She was at a boarding school in central China with around 80 children per class and a packed timetable that spread across six days a week.  In Year 11, her parents decided she would study in Australia. She made the 13-hour flight to Melbourne alone and despite feeling homesick, she fell in love with her school life and surroundings.

“My parents chose Yarra because of the School’s reputation, the high ATAR scores, the size of the campus and the extracurricular activities. Mum also thought it was far from the city, so I wouldn’t be distracted during my studies!”

Yrena threw herself into School life and quickly felt part of the Yarra community.  Teachers spent extra time with her, helping her master the English language. “I got 5 per cent for my first Chemistry SAC but my teacher said I would do better as I learned the technical terms. I did Chemistry at VCE, studied Chemistry at university and want to be a Chemistry teacher.”

One of Yrena’s favourite spots was the library where she studied after school. She remembers sun flooding through the windows and the peace.  

“The School motto, Levavi Oculos still inspires me to achieve more. I left China and travelled 8,000kms to study here. I lifted my eyes to see a different culture and that has been such an enriching experience.”


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