– best friends score high at CSEC

‘Resilient’ is a word that describes recent Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examination top performer Renuka Persaud. The aspiring doctor, who attends the Anna Regina Secondary (Multilateral) School located in Cotton Field, Region 2 is also best friends with Riana Toney, the CSEC top performer for 2019.

In an interview with the Department of Public Information (DPI), Persaud described the results of her performance as ‘mind-blowing’. The teen said she had never expected to do so well and recalled that there were shouts of joy and lots of relief following the announcement of her results last week. Persaud said while confident of her ability to sit fourteen subjects, she never expected to do so well.

“I felt that I could do it, plus my mom encouraged me to do it as well. She said if you can [then do it].”news 20190821 1

The 16-year-old, who secured 12 Grade One passes, and two Grade Twos, was a high achiever at the top of her Fourth Form class when tragedy struck. Her father was unfortunately involved in a serious accident that left him with serious injuries. “He suffered a brain injury, a broken foot and everything and was just so traumatic for us,” Persaud recalled.

She explained that her mother wanted the family to move to Tuschen on the East Bank of Essequibo in Region Three to facilitate easier medical relief for Persaud’s father. However, the move would have resulted in Persaud having to repeat her fourth form year at a new school, a move which the Deputy Headmistress of Anna Regina Secondary School advised against.

The scholar believed that staying at the school would be a rewarding experience; as such, she remained on the Essequibo Coast with her sister. Her move saw support from her teachers and friends, particularly her best friend Riana Toney.

Toney, on the other hand, is most proud of her best friend. She related to DPI that she would surely miss all the fun they had together in school, a sentiment which Persaud echoed.

Coming from the business stream, Persaud was asked what piqued her interest in medicine. “Since I was small, I always wanted to be a doctor because one of my cousins; she was actually one, and it was so nice I could’ve gone to the hospital and see her working and it was just so amazing to me,” Persaud recounted.

Her journey was not one without challenge, but she is thankful for the outpouring of support. “It was exciting. It was a wonderful journey because I had all my friends, my family and everyone, they kept encouraging me, so it was okay.”

Persaud has plans to pursue her tertiary education at the University of Guyana (UG).