IT'S surely the stuff of teenage dreams: one of Home and Away's hottest stars popping in to Margaret River Senior High School's drama class with a TV crew in tow.
But Nic Westaway isn't just any visitor from the stratosphere of soapie super-stardom - he was once a member of this very drama class and head boy of this very school.
"It was really cool seeing someone successful come and film our school and inspire us, to see where we can get to," said year 11 student Tabitha Dowding.
Fellow drama student Jordan O'Dea was equally struck by Westaway's visit.
"He was really cute and really polite and didn't have an ego like you expect famous people to," Jordan said.
Now 25 and a firm favourite on Home and Away for the past two years, Westaway returned to Margaret River recently with a TV crew from Better Homes and Gardens to show off the town where he grew up and to catch up with his family.
Dropping in on the high school drama class was also a thrill for Westaway, says mum Judith, who works in the school library.
"Nic was quite reserved when he was here as a student but he was a real all-rounder," Mrs Westaway said.
"It was a bit tough for him at times because he was very much into his football but he wanted to pursue theatre and dance as well. You could just see the passion in him whenever he watched something like that on TV.
"We brought our kids up not to worry about what others thought, so he just went ahead and did both."
Westaway studied locally with Outloud Dance Academy, performed with the Margaret River Theatre Group and played football up to senior level with the Margaret River Hawks, winning a swag of best and fairest gongs along the way.
As head boy at MRSHS in 2006, Westaway was acknowledged as a serious all-rounder with a state award for finishing in the top 2 per cent for TEE maths and a Caltex award for his achievements across the board.
He landed the role of Kyle Braxton with Home and Away after three years of hard work at the famed West Australian Academy of Performing Arts.
And for locals wishing to help Westaway's profile along, there's always voting in Cleo's Bachelor of the Year award - he's one of 30 chosen from a field of 500. Online voting closes soon.
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