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May 22 2020


Dennis Wang

Our Journey Continues series profiles BCIS Grade 12 students as they take the next step in their learning journey, they answer questions on their experience at BCIS and share their aspirations for the future. Elena is a dedicated student who had a focused passion on finding a university that was best fit for her. Read below to learn how she arrived at her decision to attend the University of Notre Dame and her reflections on her BCIS journey.


IB Diploma Programme Student

Chosen University: University of Notre Dame

How did you select the colleges you applied for? Is there anything unique about your application process you'd like to share?

I applied to universities both in the US and UK, navigating both places' very different college application systems; I also looked for different aspects when selecting specific schools. For universities in the UK, I mostly searched for schools with academic prestige in economics, which is my chosen major. For universities in the US, as well as a strong academic reputation, I also considered other factors including class size, school culture and location. Although I prefer larger universities, I also applied to two small liberal arts colleges in the US because of their strong social science departments and small class sizes which would allow me to be more engaged with professors.

Of the colleges you have received offers from, what about these colleges appeals to you the most as a BCIS student?

Among all the offers I received, I decided to attend the University of Notre Dame, which was always my first choice. I was most drawn to its strong sense of community and dedication to service. From conversations with current students and alumni, I could feel their love and passion for the school, and I knew I wanted to have that family feeling as that is what I have at BCIS. Although the location of the university is colder than Beijing and it snows very frequently, I think it will be a different and interesting experience. I'm really looking forward to my next four years!

What was an unexpected challenge you faced during Grade 12?

Grade 12 was much busier than I expected. It was a stressful time to manage both class assignments and college applications, but it was a great opportunity to develop effective time management skills. I found it very helpful to use Apps on my phone to note deadlines, test schedules, and meetings with counselors. Most importantly, as manywould agree, never leave tasks until the last minute. It's always necessary to give yourself enough time before deadlines, so you can review the assignment or be prepared the best you can. I'm glad I was able to handle this process well, and I feel more confident in myself to face challenges in the future.

What year did you begin at BCIS? What is your favorite place on the BCIS campus?

I joined BCIS in Grade 9 and spent my four years of high school here. The soccer field has always been my favorite place on campus. I was in the U19 soccer team for two years, and the field is where we enjoyed our training sessions and games. I have so many wonderful memories with my teammates there, and I'll always appreciate those times. I also loved to chill with my friends on the field in the sunshine and have fun taking photos.

What is your favorite memory from BCIS?

BCIS offers many opportunities for students to gain new experiences outside of school. The most memorable one was the Grade 11 ACAMIS tournament in Taiwan. It was my first ACAMIS tournament and my first time travelling as part of a sports team. I was a little nervous at the beginning when I stepped on the field, but eventually I enjoyed every game we played. It was a memorable trip where we enhanced our team spirit, and it was really nice to see how everyone gave so much to the team. I really appreciated and loved that time together.