A SOUTH Tyneside student is celebrating, after gaining one of her college’s highest- ever exam results.
Melissa Denker, from Harton, South Shields, is off to Glasgow University to study medicine in September after achieving top marks at Newcastle Sixth Form College for her International Baccalaureate (IB) programme.
The IB, which takes two years to complete, is an alternative to A-levels and was launched in the late sixties.
Melissa, 18, studied maths, chemistry, biology and French at higher level – when the norm is to just study three subjects at that level – and English and history at standard level.
She scored an impressive 40 points out of a possible combined score of 45, putting her among the top IB achievers at her college.
Melissa, a former Harton Technology College pupil, said: “I’m very chuffed with my results. It’s more than I hoped for.
“I would recommend the IB programme. It’s a well-rounded programme that enables you to study more subjects.
“For me, it allowed me to keep my options open, and enabled me to keep studying those subjects I didn’t necessarily need, but wanted to keep on with.” Melissa said she was delighted to get into Glasgow University – her first choice – to study medicine.
However, she’s not 100 per cent which field she’d like to study in just yet.
She added: “I’m not sure which area I would like to specialise in – I keep going through different phases.”
“I have thought about neurology, but at the moment I’m keeping my options open. I will figure it out once I start studying.”
Once Melissa has finished her five-year university degree, she would like to move back to the Newcastle area if possible.
She added: “I would like to remain in the North East, because my family is here and I enjoy living in this region.”
Andrew Vickers, IB co-ordinator at Newcastle Sixth Form College, said: “We are delighted for Melissa.
“She is an extremely hard-working girl and she truly deserved the grades she got.
“We wish her every success for the future, and have no doubt she will succeed in whatever career her degree course leads her.”