Northampton Academy is celebrating after picking up three awards at United Learning’s national Best in Everyone Awards. Luke Newton was named Sportsperson of the Year, Julia Domaracka won the Technology Award and Nathaniel Clark picked up the Young Hero of the Year Award. All three students collected their awards at a spectacular black tie gala held at the Cutlers’ Hall in Sheffield on Friday 28 June.
The Best in Everyone Awards celebrate the impressive achievements of pupils and staff at the many United Learning schools across the country. They include awards for academic excellence, extracurricular achievements and for service to school communities. As well as showcasing the talents of the Group’s pupils and staff, they also recognise some of United Learning’s most dedicated, hard-working and inspirational individuals.
The three students had been nominated by their teachers for the awards. In winning the awards, they saw off strong competition from a field of excellent candidates from across the United Learning Trust.
Kicking off the hat trick of awards is sportsman Luke who won Sportsperson of the Year. Luke regularly participates in a number of sports including rugby, football and athletics. As well as playing in the school teams, including as Captain of the Football Team, he has played for Old Northamptonians RFC and Rushden and Diamonds AFC. He is a member of the academy’s Sports Leaders team and designed the school team’s rugby kit - a feat that led Luke to being a flag bearer at a Six Nations rugby match.
Computer scientist Julia won the Technology Award for being an outstanding student with great enthusiasm and a high work ethic. She is constantly tackling challenging work and amazes her teachers with her programming skills. Her enthusiasm for the subject led her to set up her own Computer Science Club for Year 7s. She is also working with the Computer Science Department to design an e-safety display to show fellow students why it is important to stay safe online.
The Young Hero of the Year Award went to Sixth Former Nathaniel Clarke, whose bravery caught the attention of his teachers when he rescued a young boy from an icy lake near his home, on his way to school back in February. Not only did Nathaniel display courage and quick-thinking he also showed complete humility; he didn’t tell anyone what he had done when he got to school. His brave act only came to light when the boy’s parents greeted him with flowers and chocolates the next morning. It is likely that without Nathaniel’s brave actions, the young boy could have lost his life.
Congratulating the students, Nat Parnell said: “Well done to Luke, Julia and Nathaniel on being recognised in this way. All three students demonstrate integrity and embody our Academy values of respect, determination and ambition. They are hard-working, committed and inspirational individuals and we are thrilled they have won these awards.”
Luke said: “I was happy and excited, yet shocked to have won a national award, I feel very proud now I know that have received recognition at a National level. This gives me the confidence and fuels my ambition to compete at the top level in any sport. I have been passionate about all sports from a young age and I am enjoying my role as a Sports Leader at Northampton Academy.”
Julia said: “I like Computer Science because we get to learn a lot of things that will come in useful later in life. We program in Python using problem solving skills, learn about computer components such as the CPU, RAM, hardware and software, as well as using other programs such as Flash, Fireworks and Dreamweaver. Computer Science is my favourite subject so I am very happy to receive this award.”
Nathaniel said: “This award came as a great surprise, most unexpected. When I heard the screams from the boy, my natural instincts kicked in. I didn’t think twice. I just had to try to help the boy. I was relieved that Charlie was OK and I hope this highlights the dangers of icy lakes to other children.”