A full house of distinctions for Anré Waters was the cherry on top of five years at Jeppe that, he says, shaped him as a person and will always have an impact on his life.
“Maybe it was because I was in the hostel – Sable House – but I really felt that being part of the school’s family atmosphere, and having the support of the Jeppe brotherhood, and the teachers who believed in me, was special and that it played a big role in my success,” he said.
And that success was considerable. He got no less than eight As at the end of last year, an achievement that put him in the top half a percent, academically, at school level. And in his other great love, chess, he was awarded junior national colours and got to play in the Junior Commonwealth Championships.
He has always done well at his schoolwork, Anré explains, although he somehow always missed out on an A in one or twos subjects at the end of every term throughout his school career.
“So, getting eight in the end was a bit of a pleasant surprise,” he said, “although I did go for it and put in the hours.”
That meant staying in the hostel most weekends when others went home. “I found there were less distractions there than there were at home,” he explained, “and when I needed a break, there were always some friends to kick a soccer ball around with, or to play some basketball.”
Although he wasn’t, by his own admission, much of a sportsman, he was part of the public speaking and debating clubs and, of course, he spent a lot of time playing chess.
“The Commonwealth Chess Championships were an eye-opener,” he said. “They take chess very seriously in India and I didn’t do that well. It shows that we in South Africa are quite a way behind them.”
Anré was always in the “top class” in his standard and it motivated him to work hard,” he said. “As a group, our results in the final exams were quite good and I am proud to have been part of that.”
He is off to The University of Pretoria now to do a Bachelor of Engineering degree and he will, no doubt continue to excel. His contribution to the school is much appreciated and he will be missed.