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Shani: The gritty girl is the best

20 January 2011 04:01 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Don’t give up your objectives. If you are determined you can achieve your goals….
Shani Carolyn Fernando who bases her life on this motto is an Electrical Engineering student at the South Thames College in England.

She recently emerged as the best student from among 300, 000 students from 40 higher education institutes in England. Shani who is plagued with a heart disorder from birth is determined to reach her goal of becoming an aeronautical engineer someday.

“I am delighted about the ‘AOC Student of the Year’ award I won but at the same time I know how much of hard work went into that award. This is not magic, but a result of hard work and dedication. I am grateful to my parents, teachers and my friends in the college. I never expected such an accolade even in the wildest of my dreams. My motto in life is …   ‘Don’t give up your objectives. If you are determined you can achieve your goals….’. I believe that this award came my way as a result of this strong belief,” she said.


“I had a liking towards Electrical Engineering because it’s related to formula cars, racing cars and aero planes. I am keen about the production and engineering aspects of formula one cars. I am studying this on my own accord, and nobody, not even my family or friends gave me a clue about it,” she said.
“I was born with a heart disorder and had to come to England when I was just three years old. We spent a long period in England and as a result got citizenship there. My condition turned bad about two years ago and it affected my lungs too. But now I am almost ok. I never gave up studies despite my ill health. I studied hard amidst discomfort. I always had this target of becoming an aeronautical engineer and that determination made me stronger. I am away from modeling because I have to sacrifice more time on studies. I took part in modeling in recent times,” she said.

Niroshan Premaratne
Pix: Mihira Bandara

(Special thanks: Prabath Gamage)

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