David Kim

C 2014
“Being the recipient of a bursary meant that I was granted an opportunity because someone else was generous enough to believe something in me.”

Somehow the five years at Wellington turned out to be the best years of my life. Wellington is more than just a school – for me it’s a place where many of my lifelong friendships were born and where defining moments happened. I owe it to this place for making me the person I am today – much of my beliefs, values, and aspirations were formed during my time there. And I owe this to the generosity of the bursary programme and academic scholarship which enabled me to attend.

Wellington was not an easy place when I started – in fact I distinctly remember feeling incredibly left out and clueless in my first year. I was an awkward 13 year old kid from a working class background who had never been away from home, thrown into this new environment that was as far from home as any. It was full of lad-culture, hierarchy and was quite hostile to anyone who was seen as different.

This all contributed towards the way I saw and defined myself, as it did for many of my peers.

When I look back at my five years, I don’t remember it by my time as Head of College in U6th, but rather by my time in 3rd form – always feeling out of place. I will always remember this as being the hardest year of growing up. But this helped me realise what I wanted to be; that I desperately wanted to make a fairer and more equal place where everyone could feel valued.

And in retrospect I think I owe much of these realisations to the interactions I had with people I encountered along the way.

From housemasters to chaplains, to cleaning staff to porters, I found each person at Wellington in their own unique walk of life, had something I could learn from that I could not learn anywhere else – something truly humbling and extraordinary which over time shaped me as a person. They taught me more about life than anything else – the things that really mattered.

Then there were moments that gave me an appreciation of the humble things in life, appreciation of spirituality, of God, and of other people. I cannot think of a better learning experience condensed into five years. Remembering where I had come from and who I was, taught me the importance of service and humility.

Being the recipient of a bursary meant that I was granted an opportunity because someone else was generous enough to believe something in me. It inspired me to always seize every moment and make the most of it.

I left Wellington knowing I also wanted to give back to society and decided to pursue this in the field of medicine. Education is a privilege that many people around the world do not have access to and I had been lucky to have one that most could not even dream of having.

It is not something any Wellingtonian should feel burdened or guilty about, but should rather be a source of daily inspiration to do something to make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate than ourselves using what we have been gifted with. I can’t thank the bursary programme enough. The WOW! Scholarship Programme will give young people a chance to experience something unique.