Educating concerned, informed, adaptable
members of the world community

Our students in Thornhill College strive for excellence in a wide number of areas including academic, drama, sport, public speaking, social outreach, music, concern for the environment, art, science, languages and culture.

Their accomplishments are recognised in school, in their local community, nationally or even internationally.

In our gallery of “Gifted and Talented” we acknowledge these achievements of either individuals or groups of students and we celebrate their commitment, hard work and success.


Congratulations to Eve Flood who won 1st place in the Beginners' section of the HSBC British Council Mandarin Speaking Competition, held at the British Museum in London.
This is a fantastic achievement for Eve, who has only been learning Mandarin for one year through our Sixth Form Enrichment Programme, and has now beaten off competition from across the UK to win a week-long trip to Beijing in China in April.



Congratulations to 3 of our pupils who achieved Top Candidate Awards in their CCEA GCSE Examinations

Orla Maguire achieved 1st Place in N. Ireland GCSE Child Development
Constance Roarty achieved Joint 1st Place in N. Ireland GCSE English Language
and Mekha Saji achieved Joint 3rd Place in N. Ireland GCSE English Literature



Congratulations to our Senior Debater, Rebecca Harrigan, who has been selected as a member of the NI World Schools Debating Team who will compete against 50 other countries in Croatia in July.

The World Schools Debating Championship (WSDC) is a global competition for national high school debate teams. Teams from all over the world gather in a battle of minds, discussing 13 different topics set by an international panel of debate experts.
With over 50 different countries regularly participating in the tournament, WSDC is a truly global event.

This will be the only NI Team in 20 years to participate in the Championship and Rebecca is the only team member from the North-West.



Congratulations to Cara Laverty who won the 'Ulster Schools’ Junior Cross Country'  and followed this with a bronze medal at the Irish School’s Cross Country Championships in Waterford.

Cara was subsequently selected to represent Ireland at the Schools International Athletic Board Cross Country in Nottingham.

Competing for the first time in an Irish vest, as a member of the Irish Junior Cross Country team, Cara ran a fantastic race, finishing 11th overall. She was the first Irish athlete to cross the line, leading the team to a bronze medal!




Congratulations to Sophia McCormick who qualified for the All Ireland Swimming Championships in Dublin. Sophia competed with 89 other swimmers, coming 5th overall in the All Ireland 50m Butterfly Final.




Mekha Saji won the NI Soroptomist Public Speaking Competition beating off students from 12 other schools across the North of Ireland. Mekha spoke for 6 minutes on the topic of Culture and how western culture is strangling all others. She then had to prepare a speech, with only 5 minutes to prepare, on the topic 'If I had the power to push the red button would I do it?'
Last year Mekha also won the Derry Junior Chamber 'Voice of the Future' Public Speaking Competition.



Sarah O'Callaghan was the overall winner of the GCSE Category for the Northern Ireland Region at the British Education Awards 2018.
In addition to her excellent GCSE results Sarah is an active member of our award-winning school choir, and has even, on some occasions, had the role of piano accompanist for the choir. Sarah is currently studying for Grade 7 on the piano. She also is a very active member of a local Speech and Drama group and is rehearsing for a competition production of a play to be performed in the Lyric Theatre, Belfast. Sarah also acts as a Peer-mentor in Maths for some of our younger pupils. She is studying Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Maths at A Level.

Sofya Dobrynina was a finalist at the GCSE Category for the Northern Ireland Region at the British Education Awards 2018.
In addition to her excellent GCSE results she is an active member of our Debating Society and most recently has established a Chess club in our school. Sofya also acts as a Peer-mentor in Maths for some of our younger pupils, and also has a achieved a certificate in 'Introduction to Mathematical Thinking'. Outside school Soya is a keen tennis player and coach to younger children. She is studying Maths, Physics, Chemistry and French at A Level.



Bua na Gaeilge!  Being gifted and talented in language has brought an A* in GCSE Irish in Year 8 to Zara Lamberton, Emily Moran and Toni Doherty who were recently presented with their CCEA certificates in recognition of  their outstanding achievement.  Maith sibh!





Congratulations to Edan Morris, Erin Ward and Sarah O'Callaghan who achieved Joint 1st Place in CCEA GCSE Art and Design (Summer 2017).





Congratulations to Sofya Dobrynina who achieved 2nd Place in CCEA GCSE Biology and Joint 2nd Place in CCEA GCSE French (Summer 2017)





 Congratulations to Ciara Ward who achieved Joint 3rd Place in CCEA GCSE Physics (Summer 2017).




Congratulations to Cara Laverty (Year 9) who has achieved 1st place in the Minor Irish Schools Cross Country Championships in Belfast. 

This is the first time in Thornhill history that an individual Irish Cross Country title has been won by one of our girls. It is an outstanding achievement but nothing less than Cara deserves. She is talented, hard working and unassuming - the perfect package for continued success! 



Niamh McCay - Winner of the A Level Category for Northern Ireland at the British Education Awards 2017
In addition to excellent A-Level results Niamh has achieved grade 8 in Classical Singing and Musical Theatre and grade 8 in Speech & Drama. She teaches piano and supports children through vocal lessons, and is keenly involved with a wide variety of community enrichment programmes.
Niamh is currently studying Political Science & Geography at Trinity College Dublin.


Jayne Condren - Nominee for British Education Award 2017 
As well as achieving excellent A-Level results Jane is an accomplished Irish dancer. Jayne has been Ulster Champion four times and twice won the World Irish Dancing Championships. She maintains her dancing commitments alongside her studies (Maths degree in Newcastle) regularly returning home to Derry to compete.



Jessica O’Hare - Nominee for British Education Awards 2017
Jessica was nominated as a BEA finalist for her outstanding GCSE exam results, in which she gained 11 A*. A talented sportswoman, Jessica represents the school athletics team and regularly competes at District, Provincial and National level.



In the 2016 Bar Mock Trial competition Karolina Zebrowska was named as the best Barrister of the competition by the three judges. They complimented her on her excellent style of questioning and her ability to use the information she gained from her examination of witnesses effectively, particularly in her closing speeches. Congratulations Karolina!



Congratulations to both of the Thornhill teams which competed against each other in the final round of the Queen’s Literific Society Debating Competition held in the Senate room of Queen’s University.
Both Thornhill teams debated against 6 other teams from schools all over Northern Ireland.

Rebecca Harrigan and Amy Doherty (left) were overall winners, defeating Sofya Dobrynina and Hannah Lappin in the final.




Congratulations to Mekha Saji (Year 11) who won the Derry Junior Chamber 'Voice of the Future' Public Speaking Competition

Mekha spoke on the topic of English and whether it should be a universal language or not. She delivered a lively and informative speech, drawing on her own experiences of being a native of Kerala in Southern India.

The judges commended Mekha on her thorough preparation and polished delivery. 




Congratulations to Hannah Lyons (14E) who has been named one of 20 finalists in the 2017 Primerica Spirit of Community Awards Programme!
Hannah volunteers with Foyle Down syndrome Trust as well as Child line. This award is in recognition of the service to her  community.







Congratulations to Aoife Collins, 11D, on being voted 'Player of The tournament' at the Northern Ireland Under 19 Regional Netball tournament. The standard of this tournament is extremely high with the best under 19 netballers across Northern Ireland competing for their regions. This accolade is even more impressive as Aoife is only 15 years old and with three more years to compete at this tournament. 













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