School leavers Maddie Coles-Cox, 18 and Subin Bae, 19 take the plunge. Photo / Supplied
School leavers Maddie Coles-Cox, 18 and Subin Bae, 19 take the plunge. Photo / Supplied

Is this the perfect send-off for school leavers?

THIS is how you graduate high school in Queenstown - a 43m drop on the end of a bungy cord.

While that might seem an extreme graduation ceremony elsewhere, it was a perfect send-off for school leavers from the world's adventure capital.

Around 60 Year 13 students from Wakatipu High School fronted up for the leap off the historic Kawarau Bridge at the weekend, annually offered free-of-charge through AJ Hackett Bungy New Zealand's JumpStart programme.

The company's co-founder and director, Henry van Asch, said the plunge was much more fitting for local teens than the wharf jumps made by celebrating school leavers elsewhere in the country.

School leavers Tom Bellamy, 17 (Adidas top) and Kyle Galbraith, 17, take the plunge. Photo / Supplied
School leavers Tom Bellamy, 17 (Adidas top) and Kyle Galbraith, 17, take the plunge. Photo / Supplied



"We're really excited to share this Kiwi experience with local teenagers who have grown up alongside Bungy and are now embarking on the next stage of their lives," he said.

Thirty five female and 25 male jumpers took part, some choosing to jump in tandem with another classmate.

School principal Steve Hall said he was grateful for the company's support of what had become a "rite of passage" for graduates.

"There's no more fitting and iconic way for Queenstown students to celebrate their graduation than with a bungy jump."

Around 600 school leavers have jumped since the company first offered JumpStart in 2005 to coincide with the school graduation of those local kids born in 1988, the same year bungy became a New Zealand trademark.

Mr van Asch said the company launched JumpStart after recognising many Queenstown students left town after finishing their schooling.

- NZME.



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