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Three students from Fairfield College will represent New Zealand at an international secondary schools’ programming competition at the end of this month in Sydney. Karl Hendrikse (17), Michael Rose (17) and Max Hendrikse (15) recently won the right after competing successfully in the New Zealand Programming Competition run in conjunction with the New Zealand Computer Society (NZCS) and Universities throughout the country. They will be competing against teams from 16 SEARCC (South East Asian Regional Computer Confederation) countries at the same time as the Australian Computer Society hosts this year’s SEARCC Conference.

Self taught programmers, Fairfield’s team beat last year’s third placegetters from Southland in the International competition. At a special school assembly, the team was presented with certificates from Douglas White, CEO of the NZCS, and with airline tickets and team clothing from Sue White, Marketing Communications Manager of the team’s major sponsor, Gallagher Security Management Systems, the creator of the Cardax Security system. Fairfield College Principal Caroline Bennett was delighted with the team’s success.

The members of the team are not strangers to winning: team leader Karl Hendrikse gained third place in the individual secondary schools division of The Web Challenge run by NZOOM in 2003 as a 14 year old, writing a metric time clock. As a Year 12 student in 2004 he won a scholarship to Waikato University; brother Max won the technology division of the Waikato Science Fair competition in 2004 creating a mechanical automatic cat feeder; and Michael Rose gained academic success in Geography and English.

Karl and Michael are heading to Waikato University next year. Max will continue his studies at Fairfield College.