Warrane College UNSW | college accommodation for students at UNSW
Warrane College UNSW | college accommodation for students at UNSW

Community Service is compatible with top academic achievement

Bailin Jiang (Left) pictured next to Professor Gerald Fogarty (Right)

The winner of Warrane’s 2013 Community Service Residential Award, Bailin Jiang, has demonstrated that you don’t need to neglect your academic work in order to make a big contribution to the rest of society. Bailin, who had an impressive record of community service during his school years, was still able to reach the highest levels of academic achievement.

In 2012 he earned a High Distinction Award in the Australian Mathematics Competition with a 100th percentile performance. In the same year he participated in the National Mathematics Summer School, was school captain at Tumut High School and received the academic excellence award in Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Mathematics Extension.

After moving into Warrane and enrolling successfully in a Bachelor of Actuarial Studies at UNSW Bailin applied for the scholarship not only to help reduce the financial burden of university, but so that he could do more on campus.

“The scholarship means I do not have to invest a large amount of time working part time to support myself,” he said. “It also means I don’t have to worry about saving up for textbooks all the time.”

Bailin says he is now investing more time in the UNSW community and contributing to university life.

“I am also trying to contribute to the collegial life at Warrane” he said.

His plans include helping out with the college’s Activities Committee and participating in the community service projects for which Warrane has become well known.

Community activities that Bailin has put time into over the years have included a fundraising piano concert “88 Keys”, selling Legacy badges for Legacy Week, helping with Anzac Day ceremeonies (including delivering a speech on behalf of his school), helping out at the local Talbingo country club, and taking part in many school fundraising events.

In recognition of his many years of community involvement and service, he was awarded the 2012 Young Citizen of the Year by his local council. After all this experience, he says he is convinced that community service is not just about giving.

“It is my firm belief,” he said, “that community service does not only give you a sense of happiness but also a fair amount of valuable experience and skills which you cannot easily gain in any other way.”

He said benefits included the development of interpersonal skills and learning teamwork.

Bailin’s academic achievements over the years have included a High Distinction Award at the Australian Mathematics Challenge for Young Australians in 2010, a Distinction Award at the 2007, 2008 and 2009 Australian Mathematic Competition and Credit Awards at the 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 ICAS Science Competition. In both 2010 and 2011 Bailin was awarded the Bruce Elder trophy for outstanding academic achievement at Tumut High School, was a member of the Student Representative Council from 2010 to 2012 and was school chess team leader from 2009 to 2012.