Drive, hard work and forced focus: Peter Frangos’ road to dux and a 99.95 ATAR

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25 students from across Victoria were named ‘Top All-Round VCE High Achievers’ at the Premier’s Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) awards ceremony last Wednesday.

The prestigious award is given to those who have achieved study scores of 46 or higher in at least five VCE subjects, recognising their exceptional dedication and hard work.

There were two Australian students of Greek heritage among the all-round high achievers – Dux of Melbourne Grammar School, Peter Frangos, and Dux of Our Lady of Mercy College, Olivia Voulgaris.

Speaking with The Greek Herald, Peter says receiving the award is a huge honour.

“When I realised I had won it, I was really chuffed because it’s such a prestigious award,” the 99.95 ATAR recipient says.

When asked how he fared with completing his final two years of high school amid the COVID-19 pandemic and state-wide lockdowns, Peter says it wasn’t without challenge.

“The majority of year 11 and 12 was online. It was pretty tough not being able to see friends and enjoy our last terms at school together, but in all honesty, the pandemic actually kept me focused,” he says.

“There was no opportunity to get out and do stuff, I was at home and didn’t have much else to do other than to study and get to work.”

As for what advice the top all-round high achiever would offer students embarking on their final years of schooling, he points to goal setting.

“You’ve got to set really clear goals and think about what you want to achieve by the end of year 12 and how you want to see yourself at the end of that journey,” he says.

“Once that’s clear, put your head down and don’t look back.”

Upon completing the VCE, Peter was offered a full scholarship to Melbourne University and enrolled in a Bachelor of Science with guaranteed entry into any postgraduate degree of his choosing. His sights are firmly set on pursuing a career in medicine.

“Both my parents are in the medical field and it’s a really satisfying career, so I’ve never seen myself doing anything but that,” he tells The Greek Herald.

Peter Frangos pictured with his parents. Photo: Supplied to TGH

“At uni, I’m meeting some really incredible people who are truly extraordinary. I’m not extraordinary, but I am driven and hard-working.”

Now, as a full-time university student and part-time tutor for high school students, Peter remains a believer in working hard and persevering against the anxiousness and stress that academia can often bring, whilst also encouraging students to delve into ‘the classics’.

“I’m a big supporter of the classics, like Ancient Greek history and culture, and I think we need more young people to engage with that,” he concludes.

“Especially for young Greeks, it’s a really good way for us to engage with our culture and have an understanding of where we come from.”

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