From Afghanistan to Eton ... via Hull
A SIRIUS Academy pupil has become one of the first in Hull to be offered a full scholarship to one of the UK's top schools.
Rohid Zamani, 16, will head to Eton in September to do his A levels after beating competition from a thousand other pupils to gain the full scholarship.
This covers the £30,000-a-year fees.
He will also receive a £1,500 bursary to help towards the school uniform and other expenses.
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Rohid navigated four days of interviews and tests to gain the scholarship at Eton, where he will study maths, biology, chemistry and physics.
He said: "I was approached by the school to see if I wanted to apply for the scholarship.
"I spoke to my parents, who were sceptical at first, but we decided it was too good an opportunity to turn down.
"I was one of 18 from about 1,000 to go down for a four-day interview.
"We had a maths and general knowledge test and then a verbal and non-verbal reasoning test, which I'd never done before.
"Luckily, I was picked so I must have done OK."
Rohid hopes the scholarship will pave the way for him to become a surgeon.
He said: "I really liked art when I was younger but I felt there was a better career in the sciences.
"I would like to do medicine and become a surgeon. I like the idea of doing something which helps others."
Rohid was born in Afghanistan and moved to Hull when he was three years old. The experience of life in the war-torn country is a real motivation.
"I was born when war was raging in Afghanistan and al Qaeda were around," said Rohid.
"I remember my mum was ill in bed and my aunty came round and told her to get up and walk around a bit.
"Moments after she got up, a bomb went off and shattered the windows.
"The shards of glass fell on the bed. If my mum had been there she would have been dead.
"Knowing what we escaped drives me on and coming to England was a massive opportunity for us."
While a daunting prospect, Rohid, of Sanley Street, is looking forward to Eton.
He said: "It's a huge step, a bit like going to university two years early.
"But so long as I keep busy I will be able to adapt.
"I will miss my family and friends but this is too big an opportunity to pass up."
Adam Rust has been Rohid's teacher for several years.
He said: "I was head of Year 7 when he started and then head of the house he was in. I'm also his PE teacher.
"When I first met him he was very shy.
"He was very athletic and, when he joined the rugby league club at the school, he gained a lot of confidence and made new friends.
"He was offered deals with both Hull FC and KR but he had to give up due to a shoulder injury.
"He also holds the school record for the triple jump.
"Rohid has come on so much and is now a very confident young man.
"Hopefully, he can raise the aspirations of other students and be a role model."
Councillor O'Mullane, the city council's portfolio holder for children's services, praised Rohid for getting the scholarship.
She said: "I am delighted that a student from one of the city's new academies has been awarded a bursary and scholarship at Eton College.
"I hope the success that Rohid has achieved will inspire other students and I wish Rohid continued success as he begins his studies at the prestigious college."