Sarah Robson took time out from hounding John Key and David Cunliffe to preach the merits of a Feilding upbringing to students at her former school.
Ms Robson, a political journalist for New Zealand Newswire, based in Wellington, was the guest speaker at the Feilding High School's 93rd commemoration service on Monday.
The 25-year-old finished at FAHS in 2005 to study media studies and politics before taking the helm of Victoria University's student magazine Salient.
Ms Robson talked about being interested in politics and news at an early age, preferring watching to watch news over shows such as The Simpsons, and knowing more names of government officials than musicians or movie stars.
"If it was anything remotely related to politics, I was there with bells on," she said.
Working in the press gallery at parliament was her dream job.
"It's our job to hold people to account and tell people what's going on, both good news and bad."
Ms Robson encouraged FAHS students to be proud of their Feilding upbringing.
"I've been pretty quick to stick up for little old Feilding," she said.
"I've come to realise that growing up in Feilding is actually pretty sweet."
Having spent time in Auckland and Wellington, Ms Robson said the town and her former school had given her a solid grounding.
"In Feilding it doesn't matter what side of town you come from . . . you all end up sitting next to each other at the assembly hall or classroom."
Finding interests, even if it takes time, was her advice for school leavers.
"You've got to do something that makes you happy.
"If there's something you're interested in, pursue it."
The commemoration address was attended by past students and politicians.
- Feilding Herald