DHSG have won the SWAT Challenge Cup 2019
Congratulations to Anjola, Saahithyi, Akshita, Chloe and the SWAT committee. Thanks also must go to South West Academic Trust for providing this opportunity and Colyton Grammar School for hosting.
MP Neil Parish was among the judges. Students were grilled by fellow students from other grammar schools and the judges after they delivered their presentation. This year's theme was 'How can Britain develop a housing policy that is inclusive, sustainable and popular'. A Fantastic achievement!
My SWAT Experience
Coming to DHSG, was a big achievement for me, but winning something like this was unexpected. In January, I began preparing a short presentation with two other people about “How can Britain develop a housing policy that is inclusive, popular and sustainable?” We three, took a subject each, I oversaw sustainability. I spent nights researching, until I came up with a solution. We were told the preliminary round was just before the half term in February. I was very nervous, as this was my first time speaking in front of audiences. Soon the time came, when the spotlight was upon me, I pushed myself and spoke confidently. I did mumble and stutter, but I had to rectify it then and there. Within two minutes, we were done. I was quite proud of myself for presenting. After two weeks of waiting, I finally got the e-mail. To my greatest shock, it said I got in. Well, the funny thing is that, I entered SWAT to improve my speaking skills, but getting through was amazing. We were only given three weeks to come up with the final presentation, so we started merging our Power Points and editing slides. We also started delegating the information. Just near the end of our three weeks, we had to present it to the SWAT Committee and the teachers. As our presentation needed feedback, we were given some pointers by different people. Just the day before the SWAT Challenge Cup, I kept panicking about what I was going to say and what it was going to be like, so I just left it. I didn’t practice at all, as I knew that would make me more worried. The next day, we had to be there at school by 7:45am because the journey was about 1 hour and 15 minutes long. On the coach we had a good time, we didn’t really care about the presentation, we just talked. When the coach pulled up at Colyton Grammar School, I suddenly felt very scared yet excited at the same time. We were given an envelope for our Unseen Challenge and 20 minutes, it said: “How can we fit more storage in a house?” We discussed about spacing, minimalistic lifestyles, technology and electrics. Shortly afterwards, one of the judges gave us a talk. Then the 1st team performed, it was also our turn asking them two questions. We did try to make them hard, but they did answer them correctly. After two more presentations, it was Break. Our team rehearsed it a few times and the 4th and 5th presentation started. We were presentation 6. When it was our turn, we all took a deep breath and presented as we usually did. Then the questions came, luckily, we could answer them. When the final presentations were over, the judges went outside to choose the winners. It was so nerve racking. After a few minutes, they came in and after a long pause, they announced Devonport High School for Girls. Our team was so excited, and we had a turn of holding the trophy each. This was definitely a memory and achievement to remember. “Thanks, DHSG for the opportunity, and this is just the beginning.
By Akshita Rajguru 7F.