Student Profile: Kate Neale

March 11, 2019

From participating in sports such as netball and volleyball, to Academic and Cultural pursuits such as debating, drama, scriptwriting and Shakefest, Year 12 student, Kate Neale, has packed a great deal into her time at Downlands.


Both Kate and her parents had clear ideas about what they wanted in a high school. “My parents were looking for a Catholic co-ed school, and I was looking for a school where I could feel comfortable and supported; the students we met at our first Open Day at Downlands were so welcoming and enthusiastic; it was clear that they enjoyed school and this convinced us that this was the right school for me.”

The decision was a happy one as Kate’s family has a history with Downlands – her grandfather, Ted Neale (1942-43), as well as great uncles Barry (1955-58) and Kerry White (1959-62) attended the College. 

Guided by her philosophy of working hard and to the best of her abilities, Kate has received academic awards every year since commencing at Downlands in Year 8. In 2018, Kate received an Academic Excellence Award for the highest results in Year 11. Kate has further developed her academic skills by taking full advantage of opportunities such as the ICAS tests. In 2017, Kate was presented with a University Medal after recording the highest ICAS English Exam result in Queensland. 

Kate enjoys a variety of activities from volleyball to drama, debating and oratory competitions. Awarded the Glen Slater Memorial Award in 2018 for her speech about Media Bias, Kate was a proud member of the champion debating team in 2017 and her team made the Semi-finals in 2018. She is looking forward to debating again in 2019, along with training to be an adjudicator. 

The Downlands Drama department has provided Kate with wonderful opportunities. She has participated in Junior and Senior Drama Clubs, annual showcases, a scriptwriting group, Shakefest, and played a lead role in the 2017 College Play Wyrd Sisters. The scriptwriting group has written the 2019 College Play Imprint and Kate is looking forward to Assistant Directing in this year’s performance. Exploring drama outside of school, Kate participates in the Australian Music Examinations Board exams, with her most recent results being a High Distinction in Drama and Performance Grade 7 and an Honours in Speech and Performance Theory Grade 5.  

With a great interest in biology and chemistry, Kate is currently exploring career options in Allied Health, such as Occupational Therapy or Speech Pathology. She is also pursuing a Speech Diploma with the AMEB.

Kate believes that balance is extremely important as well as taking responsibility for one’s learning and relationships. As a Missionaries of the Sacred Heart (MSC) College, this aligns with the College commitment to developing its students as well-rounded individuals, nurturing each student not just academically, but as a whole person. 

According to Downlands Principal, Mr Stephen Koch “Our goal is to have happy students who perform to their personal best in all situations and who take responsibility for their learning and relationships. This includes student presentation, excellence in academic pursuits, co-curricular involvement, treating peers and community members with respect and kindness, and having a sense of humour.”

You can read Kate's Story in the Autumn 2019 issue of Highlife Downs Living



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