Papamoa College student Katherine Speidell is one of only four students nationwide selected to take part in the Global Leaders Delegation in January 2018.

Speidell leaves for a 20-day trip on January 4 next year when she will spend six days at an international leadership conference in Prague, the capital of Czech Republic.

The 17-year-old will also travel to world-leading universities in a number of countries and will visit historical sites and government facilities in the United Kingdom.

She was most excited about travelling to Switzerland to visit the Large Hadron Collider - a large powerful particle accelerator.


"I am such a geek so I am going to love that," Speidell said.

It will be the teenager's first time heading to the United Kingdom and she was looking forward to what she described as what would be "the most amazing experience ever".

Speidell was the co-leader of the Papamoa Enviro Council, a Rainbow Youth Facilitation Alumni, among many other roles, and had completed more than 400 hours of voluntary community service this year.

How does she fit everything into her busy schedule on top of her schoolwork?

"I skip a lot of sleep that I probably shouldn't," Speidell said.

"I just don't take anything on in my schedule that I am not prepared to throw myself into.

"A lot of people my age are hesitant to put themselves out there and get involved in new things, but I like to get involved in as much things as possible."

She was also elected deputy head girl of Papamoa College next year. The teen was asked to take the head girl position but she was told she was too busy.


The Global Leaders Delegation trip was organised by Crimson Education which was founded in New Zealand in 2013 to help people achieve their potential.

The teenager said she spent most of her elective time working in the areas of leadership, entrepreneurship and human rights.

Attending the Global Leaders Delegation will provide her with an incredible opportunity to further grow her skills in public speaking, leadership, and teamwork.

"I am honoured to be one of only four high school or university students to be chosen to attend the delegation from New Zealand, and the only representative from the Bay of Plenty," Speidell said.

She enjoyed "anything craft related", making jewellery and knitting blankets for Mission Without Borders.

She also hoped to take one day off school a week next year to spend more time at her job working with children on the autism spectrum in Rotorua.

Speidell said she was now fundraising for the $9000 trip before she leaves on January 4, 2018.

For more information or to offer sponsorship, email Speidell at or

- Deputy head girl Papamoa College 2018
- Papamoa College Lions Award for Community Service 2017
- Member of Papamoa Student Council 2017
- Entrepreneurs in Action Alumni 2017
- Co-Leader Papamoa Enviro Council 2017
- More than 400 hours of voluntary community service in 2017
- Project Ignite Summer Student Incubator Mentor 2017
- Rainbow Youth Facilitation Alumni 2017
- Entrepreneur of the Year, third place 2017
- Startup Weekend Mentor & Crew 2016-2017
- Mashup Mentor 2016-2017
- Leader/Founder of Papamoa GSA 2016-2017
- Youth Jam Leader 2016-2017