Twelve students graduated in June and most of them went on to study at Universities in the USA, Holland, UK, Denmark or Estonia. We talked three of them to find out where they study and how they remember IB years.
Where do you study now? What will be your future profession?
Greta: I’m about to finish my first semester at the University of Northern Colorado, USA studying to obtain a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration with an Accounting Emphasis. If I continue on the track I’m on now I should be an accountant in 2.5 years. I currently work in the University’s Center for Honors, Scholars, and Leadership.
Liza: Currently I am studying at Maastricht University, Netherlands, enrolled in the European Public program. Health. My future profession will be connected with health and wellness promotion, the prevention of the diseases and prolonging life.
Miia: I am currently studying in Denmark, in KEA University, which in English stands for Copenhagen School of Design and Technology. In 3,5 years, after I finish the bachelor, my profession would be architectural technologist.
Do you think your time at IB helped you pursue this? If yes, how?
Greta: IB courses I took allowed me to bypass introductory classes and move straight to difficult ones. By this logic, I took all my basic university classes at Audentes. The most useful skills IB taught me (that I actually made use of) were how to write a resume, impress future employers at an interview, and how the hiring process actually works (through IB Business Management), and how to whip out a quality essay on demand (mostly through IB History).
Liza: IB helped me to develop my biology interests, especially the curriculum of the IB Biology, because it gave me a clear understanding of what I want to study after I graduate. I believe that the wide range of topics in each subject of the International Baccalaureate can help you to choose your future path and influence your opinion and ideas of what exactly you are interested in as well it helps you to evaluate and prioritize your knowledge.
Miia: My time at IB definitely helped me pursue my studying. Even more than subject specific knowledge it prepared me for working with teams and presenting my work. In my field of study, students in school and architects on the field are daily working in groups to achieve the best results through combining different backgrounds and knowledge. Thus, team work skills are a diamond skill to have! Also, it is not only important to have the expertise but also know how to present your work to people who are not familiar with the drawings, sketches and models. The skill to be a good presenter pays of very well, too!
Is there a demand for new talent in this (your) occupation?
Greta: Yes, the demand is worldwide. In Forbes’ article “Top Degrees for Getting Hired in 2016” Accounting Degrees placed number one.
Miia: There is a demand for new talents in my upcoming occupation, and that is why I hope to get the experience to not only study (as I do now) but also be able to work on projects in different countries.
If you had it to do all over again, what would you do differently?
Greta: Looking back, I spent a lot of time on projects that were quickly forgotten and did not benefit me. If I were unlucky enough to have to repeat IB, I would plan my time around the IAs and final exams that really impact one’s score.
Liza: I would definitely organize my time differently, since IB is a tough programme and you really need to focus on studies. Self-management and time management are the main skills every IB student should have, otherwise you will not succeed.
Miia: If I could or had to do IB all over again I would not change much about myself. I worked hard and it payed off. Of course, there is always room for improvement but I am satisfied with my results. I managed to balance school and life, which was very important to me. When it comes to the overall IB experience, I have to accept that there are some things out of my hands and that is life.
Who was your favourite lecturer and why?
Greta: Audentes had multiple star teachers when I was a student. Andrei Apostol, my EE supervisor, really made me love history and I was always interested in his classes. Meelis Kitsing demonstrated his expertise, taught me many skills that I make use of on a daily basis, and introduced me to topics that I plan to work with for the rest of my life. Tatyana Kasima kept students engaged. She was positive during difficult times (which influenced the students, myself included) and made the play My Fair Lady a reality.
Liza: Every IB teacher has different teaching methods so it’s hard to name the best one. I think the most important quality that a teacher should have is to build a friendly atmosphere while creating a bond between teacher and student, because learning and understanding of the material is always influenced by how the teacher can present it. Moreover, I believe that learning process needs to proceed from both teacher and student sides, since it is important to give an opportunity for students to get new knowledge by themselves and then present it in the class. That can make students understand the material better. Kadri Mettis, Tetyana Kasima and Andrei Apostol are the perfect examples of real teachers.
Miia: Estonian A lessons with Anu Petermann were always very encouraging. She made us feel like we all had something special in ourselves and told us that we should never believe someone who says that we are not good enough. In reality we are far better and more capable of what think we are. English B Teacher Margarita Hanschmidt never stopped pushing us to extend our limits and develop different sides of our knowledge and personality. Which I am, too, very grateful of.
What was your most memorable moment as a student?
Greta: The play My Fair Lady was the most enjoyable part of my IB experience. It was an impressive undertaking that all IB grades were a part of. The outcome was an immense success that served as a well-deserved reward for completing the mock exams.
Liza: For me field trips and the final class trip are the most memorable moments. It really strengthens the connection between students and gives the understanding that IB is not only about learning and studying, but it’s also about spending time together as one big family.
Do you still believe in the same principles as you did when you were a student?
Greta: Yes, my values are the same as they were in 2013 when IB started for me. I would not be where I am now without them. One cannot possibly graduate from IB without determination, a motivation for continuing to work hard, and steadfastness in what they believe.
Did you enjoy your time at IB?
Liza: Even though IB was demanding and challenging, I did enjoy my time and I am glad I chose this study. It taught me a lot and helped me to become open-minded, more curious about different perspectives that exist. I am glad I got a chance to study with people who have different cultural backgrounds. During the studies my class was my family, as I came to live in Estonia alone. My ex classmates are still my friends and we communicate even though our IB studies have finished.
Miia: I enjoyed my time at IB and at Audentes a lot. The school with the staff made the whole experience very enjoyable.
What was your funniest moment as a student?
Liza: All activities I was involved in with classmates such as Teachers’ Day, Mini Model United Nations, Bake Sale, Theatre Play ‘My Fair Lady’, forest hiking and swimming in the pond – brings even now a smile to my face when I think of them. I have positive and bright memories connected to those events which I hope will be continued at Audentes School.
Describe IB in 3 words?
Liza: I have three different options:
1) Excessive. Exhausting. Beneficial.
2) Don’t miss deadlines.
3) It’s worth it.
Miia: Now, not later!
What is your lasting impression of IB?
Liza: Being now a bachelor student, I really feel the benefit I obtained due to studying in IB. I feel myself being ahead of other students due to my previously gained knowledge. Knowing how to write academic papers, being familiar with self-study process and organization skills, thinking from various perspectives and trying to analyze situations and tasks from different point of views, receiving and consuming new information in English and not in your mother tongue – all these qualities and capabilities I gained through my IB experience. This gives me an advantage today and I am glad I was given such an opportunity.
Miia: My lasting impression of IB: Cold hands of a warm heart giving me a stabbing hug (All of it in a positive way!).
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