Spanish speaker wins national competition

02 Nov 2021

Year 13 student Kosei Oikawa, 18, has won the Level 3 section of the annual competition with a 3min video presentation prepared during the recent Covid lock down.

He spoke about his identity as a Japanese New Zealander, discussed why he thought New Zealand was a good place to live, and considered what constituted quality of life.

“I said the quality of life was subjective, and that with the development of social networks, we could compare ourselves with others only to feel inferior and superior. So, we need to look inside of ourselves to truly know what a good quality of life looks like for us. Also, I spoke about my Japanese identity and its importance to me as part of my core identity. I also said I would choose to live in New Zealand because of the education system, its great outdoors and natural environment, and because it was relatively free of Covid.”

Born in Japan, Kosei has been living in New Zealand since he was five. He has studied Spanish for five years, three of them at College. He spent last summer just outside Barcelona on an international football study abroad experience.

“The fact that I could speak the language fairly well and understand a lot of what the native speakers were saying boosted my confidence a lot and motivated me.”

With the College Year 12 Spanish prize already under his belt, Kosei is one of four Year 13 boys studying this year with Spanish teacher Teryl Yogeeswaran.

Kosei speaks Japanese, English and Spanish and is keen to add a fourth language, possibly French.

“I’ve learnt the importance of language to connect with people. English is one of the most widely used languages, but with so many languages to explore in the world, I’m keen to expand my mind and study others.”

Spanish Competition