Some of the country's brightest students are from the Waikato.
Results from last year's national Scholarship Examinations have confirmed Hamilton's St Paul's Collegiate School is the country's highest achieving independent school for academic performance, with students gaining 43 scholarship passes and 14 outstanding scholarship passes.
In addition, four St Paul's students received outstanding scholar awards, which are given to the top 60 academic students across New Zealand who entered the examinations.
Scholarship provides recognition and monetary reward to high achievers who are generally in their last year at school.
Nearly 40 per cent of the students at St Paul's who sat scholarship examinations last year achieved a pass in one or more subjects.
Few outstanding scholarship passes are achieved nationally per subject.
St Paul's students gained four of the 27 outstanding scholarship passes in chemistry and one of four available in science.
Examination marks in mathematics with statistics were also high with students gaining 10 scholarship passes, including three outstanding, while calculus students gained five passes, including two outstanding.
Assistant headmaster of St Paul's senior school Peter Hampton says for the students to gain scholarship success, they need to be resilient and determined.
"The students need to demonstrate high-level critical thinking and apply their knowledge, understanding and ideas to complex situations.
"These are tough examinations," he says.
The four outstanding scholar award winners, who rank as the county's top 60 scholars are:
Belinda Pedersen - outstanding scholarship passes in calculus, chemistry, statistics; scholarship passes in physics, biology.
Sheng Cao - outstanding scholarship passes in calculus, chemistry, statistics; scholarship pass in physics.
Olivia Thompson - outstanding scholarship passes in science, chemistry, statistics.
Charlotte Dumble - outstanding scholarship passes in biology, chemistry; scholarship passes in calculus & statistics.
Each outstanding scholarship awardee receives $5000 annually for up to three years as long as they maintain a B average in tertiary study in New Zealand.