Rena Brown: Managing time for success
Thoughtful, brilliant and determined are all adjectives used to describe outgoing Westwood High School head girl Rena Brown. This year, Brown not only inspired the young ladies at that prestigious institution as head girl, but also through her stellar academic performance. In total, she copped five ones and a two in the recently concluded Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE).
This comprised a one for pure mathematics, entrepreneurship, management of business, Spanish and Caribbean studies, and a two in computer science. This actuarial science student aims to be the best actuary that ever existed and did subjects such as pure mathematics to challenge herself.
Her passion for learning is reflected in the choice of subjects she did. “I had first researched the subjects that will be required to pursue my dream and then I identified the subjects … essential for me to achieve my goal and aid me in acquiring necessary life skills,” she said.
Acquiring important life skills also led her to participate in the quiz club at school. She was a member of the team, general secretary of the club, an active member of the Jamaica Prefects’ Association and vice-president of her school’s Sixth Form Association.
Naturally, balancing these obligations while juggling six CAPE subjects was a mammoth task. She recalls, “There were many a times I would want to go to my bed, but I knew I had many tasks to do … . There were times when I would be told that I was crazy to be doing six subjects while having so many responsibilities.”
She told The Gleaner, “Many sacrifices had to be made. When others were home enjoying their holidays and resting, I would have to be at school studying my quiz content and planning for the upcoming tasks … . At times it was overwhelming, but with the proper guidance and help from peers and teachers like Mr Simmonds, I prevailed in the end.”
This triumph was facilitated due to proper time management, a skill she developed while participating in TVJ Schools’ Challenge Quiz. She also credits the boarding system at Westwood as another important factor that assisted her success, as she could allocate her time without having to incorporate time for commute or other delays.
Her advice to other students is, “Do not be discouraged, think positively at all times. Never let fear and negative comments prevent you from doing something that you really want to do. Do your own thing, be true to yourself, believe in your ability to accomplish what you have set your mind to and just be positive because with prayer, hard work and determination, success will come!”