Megan Carlisle (2017) was known at St John’s D.S.G. for her kind heart, her enthusiasm and her willingness to learn and get involved wherever she could – she has always been a real go-getter! Currently completing the final year of her B.A. degree at the University of Pretoria (majoring in English, Heritage and Cultural Tourism) she says she has thoroughly enjoyed her studies. She spent two years living in Res, which was an incredible experience, she says, as it allowed her to live and interact with people from all walks of life.
Megan plays a lot of sport in her spare time, loves to travel and also volunteers for a non-profit organization called Lessons in Conservation. This organization, which was founded by her cousin, educates young children in rural communities about conservation; a cause also very close to Megan’s heart. In fact most of her family has a passion for conservation. “It must be in our genes or something!” she says. She was recently fortunate enough to experience a month-long road trip with the rest of the Lessons in Conservation team through Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Eswatini. “It was so rewarding teaching children from all these countries about conservation,” Megan says. “Witnessing the harsh realities they face and seeing how enthusiastic they about trying to make a difference was amazing.”
Having made Golden Key (the top 15% of her degree), Megan hopes to pursue a career in Ecotourism where she can use tourism to aid conservation and to help people too. It was a pleasure to catch up with Megan for this month’s Heart-to-Heart. Take a look at what she says:
What did you love most about St John’s D.S.G?
The people! I truly have made friends for life and I am beyond grateful that I had the opportunity to attend St John’s D.S.G. and make such incredible friends. The incredible staff played a huge role in my Senior School career and my experience would not have been the same without them. I am also grateful for the experiences such as uHambo and Wilderness trail. I will always treasure those experiences and the memories and lessons gained from them.
What does success mean to you and how did St John’s D.S.G equip you for life after school?
Success to me means giving your all. St John’s D.S.G. provided me with the chance and support to try and experience various opportunities. Whether I succeeded or not, I still tried. The school provided me with an environment in which I could give my all and regardless of the outcome, I would learn valuable lessons about myself. This allowed me to strengthen my character and motivation. In doing so, I have been well equipped for life outside of school. I know my values and worth and I just give everything my best shot.
What advice do you have for our current girls and their families?
Embrace your opportunities, regardless of the outcome. I think this is something so important, especially during this crazy time in the world. Both failure and success are invaluable vehicles for learning – about yourself and the world. Both are opportunities for you to improve and grow, to channel your intrinsic motivation to better prepare you for the next step on your journey through life.
And also, to cherish every moment with the people you love. If these past few months have taught me anything, it’s that things can change before you know it. So don’t take anything for granted, cultivate gratitude, even if only in the little moments, and be sure to savour them as much as you can.
If you would like to learn more about Lessons in Conservation and how you can support the amazing work they do, please visit their website www.lessonsinconservation.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org ?