04 April, 2022 Academic - Old Michaelians

The balancing act of VCE studies – Emily Kloss

St Michael’s students have a long history of continuing to tertiary study and into various post-school pathways. Following the release of VCE results in December, many of our Class of 2021 have received tertiary offers and are now taking the next step on their education journey.

To give us an insight into what it’s like to prepare for the VCE, we asked some of our graduates to share their stories and tips for future VCE students.

Emily Kloss (OM 2021) shares a wonderful observation about the community of St Michael’s and being on one campus alongside her brother and sister. ‘I thoroughly enjoyed attending a school where I felt close to my siblings and could easily spot them throughout my day. I loved the ability to wave to them as I moved through the school, walk home together, and talk about our shared experiences being at the same campus amongst the same community.’

Emily reflects on some of the things she was most proud of at St Michael’s —  ‘I believe my greatest achievements came from my passion and dedication to community action and student engagement with my relentless pushing for change and growth. As a Prefect, I was proud to create ‘Mental Health Week’ which took place in Term 3 last year, during online learning, making its importance even greater. I also worked with staff on the School’s Reconciliation Action Plan, and I’m proud to see this being instilled throughout the community.’

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    The Breen House Co-Captains celebrate their, 4th consecutive win
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    Playing for Big Band at Twilight Music Festival in 2021

Emily explained to us ‘I have always respected and admired St Michael’s ability to celebrate students’ uniqueness and support the various endeavours that help create a well-rounded young adult. I loved the enthusiasm for extra-curricular activities, whether it be sport, music or art, and the support that these can be just as important as academic success. I enjoyed the freedom to experiment with different hobbies and interests, and the general teachings that once you leave the school environment, success in the real world can come in many different forms if you are doing something you love. These messages set me up to feel empowered, confident, and deeply empathetic.’

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    Emily on the Great Barrier Reef Immersion trip in 2019
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    Emily with Year 12 Breen in 2021

Emily discussed with us the power of balance and says ‘I never would have received the score I did if I had studied nonstop the whole year as I’d always imagined I would. Instead, I relaxed more than I thought I should have, took a break when my head started to hurt, prioritised health and fitness over studying, and found a balance so that my studies didn’t completely overtake my life.’

My biggest piece of advice for future VCE students would be to readjust your vision of how your final year will go and instead become a master of adapting and adjusting.Emily Kloss (OM 2021)

We spoke to Emily about her next steps in life post-study, and she was pleased to share that ‘after a gruelling 12 months of study and stress, I have decided to take a gap year to travel, work and just breathe for a second before I begin many years of strenuous study to hopeful eventually become a paediatrician. I have always known I wanted to be a doctor. In January I received a place in Undergraduate Biomedical Science at Monash and deferred, so I will begin in 2023. This year, I plan to spend a few months in central Australia volunteering for an organisation called Children’s Ground, supporting their work with First Nations children. I am also hoping to travel in Europe for a few months.’

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    1st Volleyball team in 2020
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    Exchange to France at the beginning of 2020


We wish Emily the best of luck with her travels, volunteer work, and her journey to become a doctor.