Grace McCarthy- Sinclair | Music / Performing Arts2021
Basketball has allowed me to also maintain a healthy body, mind and voice which pays tribute to my singing as having balance and being fit helps support my vocals.
Basketball has also been an integral part of my life since my early years. I have represented Rotorua since the age of 12 . Basketball became a passion for me. I’ve enjoyed the discipline of learning about the game, playing, sacrificing weekends for tournaments, and sleep for early morning training, working in a team environment and refereeing to give me a well developed understanding of the game. My basketball journey has allowed me to cook many sausages for fundraising, travel around the country playing for the Women’s league as well as other National Competitions and also overseas, meeting disciplined athletes, like-minded people of which I have found many life-long friends.
I was given the opportunity to travel to China as a cultural ambassador with a Bay of Plenty Male High School aged team in 2019. I have travelled to Australia three times for Basketball, twice for the New Zealand Basketball Pacific Koru Tour and to the 2017 Australia Secondary schools nationals in Melbourne. Basketball has given me skills and opportunities I would never had thought possible.
Being part of a team is what makes the sport of basketball. Like any team in any sporting code, there are responsibilities within the team and to the team. There are values, rules and principles all team players should abide by. My strengths in the sport is that I play my role to the best of my ability. I never forgo training lightly. I practice every day, I keep myself fit. On court I look to where I can best position myself to get the best result for the team. It does not always mean I get to throw the winning shot but may mean I assist another player who will make the shot.
When I moved this year, it meant I would not have any senior leadership role at my new school, even though in my previous school I qualified as Head Arts Captain, prefect, and had earnt my academic jacket. Sometimes your values take precedence over trophies, because as a leader you have to be true to what you believe, and no matter what age you are, and no matter what obstacles it might present. Leaders should be people who are courageous, demonstrate empathy, stay true to their beliefs, have strength of character, but not at the expense of others.
Since primary school, I have held prominent leadership roles such as Student Council President and in intermediate I was a Prefect. I share this because it was something that was very natural for me. I’ve always been approachable, nurturing, and genuinely care about the students I represented. I have always felt a strong sense of responsibility. I was given many opportunities as Master of Ceremonies by welcoming the then Prime Minister, John Key, Rotorua Mayor Stevie Chadwick and Rotorua MP, Todd McClay. I pay tribute to the Principals, and Teachers for giving me these opportunities, and for seeing in me leadership qualities.
My life of playing competitive basketball and performing classical singing has been like the Hannah Montana Movie. Whereas like the Hannah Montana character, I wear my formal gowns and perform on stage, and when I am like Miley Cyrus I wear my basketball shoes and run a couple kms. As chaotic as I have known Hannah Montana’s life to be, I realise both mine and Hannah’s lifestyles are similar in different ways. We endeavour to balance both lifestyles and we naturally change ourselves to suit either environment. I have attended many basketball tournaments, as well as participating in musical productions to discover the diverse cultures within both. I have learnt to adjust to both cultures and I believe it has allowed me to connect with many different types of people.
The many events and situations inside and outside my high school life I am sincerely grateful for, with both the good and bad experiences. I have grown and evolved mentally to perceive the bad experiences or difficult situations as opportunities to grow and strengthen myself as an individual of society. I am a sensible, independant respectful individual who takes great responsibility in shaping my future.