Student feature – students from the Class of 2020 share their experiences of studying at SISHK and the IBDP.

Kaitlyn Shi

  • President, Athletic Council
  • Advisor, Audiovisual Team
  • SISHK Leadership Award recipient
  • SISHK Year Head Commendation Award winner
  • Sir Edward Youde Memorial Prize awardee

Q. How long have you been studying at SISHK?
I joined in PY2 so this is my 13th year at SISHK!

Q. What advice do you have for students looking to study the IBDP?
Even though it’s tough, try to enjoy your IB years as much as possible – it’s your last two years with friends who you could’ve known almost your whole life! Enjoy your CAS activities as much as possible because they’re a good stress reliever as you don’t have to constantly focus on academics. Make sure you’re taking time out for yourself so you don’t feel too overworked.

Q. What is the highlight of your IB journey at the school in the last two years?
The leadership opportunities at SISHK. I was the President of the Athletic Council (AC) and was fortunate enough to work with a group of about 30 students from all grades with similar passions to strengthen house spirit within the school. I felt that the AC was another little family within the school, and I was always looking forward to working with them. I’ve learnt many invaluable lessons from them on how to grow as a leader, and hopefully they’ve picked up a few things from me too!

Q. What is your studying strategy?
Planning ahead. I think a key part of studying is making sure you know when your deadlines or tests are, as well when other events are taking place, so that you have enough time to revise and prepare. This way you can flag concepts you don’t understand and ask your teachers or peers for support.

Q. What are some of the mistakes that you have made that you would not make again?
Sometimes it was hard to prioritise academics over extracurriculars, so maybe I’d try to procrastinate less so I’d have more time for both! The IB is tough, so sometimes I’d find myself short of time to complete everything I had to do. I think I’d also try to find time for proper rest so that I don’t get overly stressed.

Q. How did the teachers support you during the IB programme?
Teachers are always open to consultations and are there to support you on your IB journey as long as you take the initiative to ask for help. Not only do they teach us syllabus content, they also work with us through leadership groups, mentoring us to develop holistically as well. They are a constant pillar of support and guidance, and constantly encourage us to reach our highest potential.

Q. How would you describe the student life and student leadership opportunities in SISHK?
There are countless student leadership opportunities in the school, ranging from committees like the Audio-Visual team and Muze, leading the houses as a head of house or house representative, as well as the student, community and athletic councils. Within these groups, you can join as a member or as part of the executive team. I think this really helps with your own holistic learning journey.

Q. What are you planning to study and go after IB?
I hope to pursue a Bachelor of Science with a major in wildlife conservation and a second major in education in Australia.

Q. How do the IBDP mock exam and its predicted grade help you with university admissions?
It didn’t affect me because I plan to apply to Australian universities after I receive my results in July.

Q. Can you share more about your university admissions experience?
I am waiting on my final results before I apply.

Q. What is the one thing that you will miss after leaving SISHK?
I’ll definitely miss my friends as we will all be heading off to different universities and pursuing different paths. I’ll miss seeing them everyday as I had been for the majority of my life.

Q.What is one part of the school that you would like to see preserved and not changed?
The plaza’s picnic tables are a nice space for collaboration. We can have lunch there, chat with friends during break times, work on group projects or revise together. They are also used to have consultations with your teachers. The atmosphere is always nice there!
Another ‘part’ of the school would be the house system. I think it really helps build school spirit by encouraging friendly competition. The house system involves everyone because you are able to contribute to gaining house points through different activities that target academics, sports, the arts and more.
Participating in these activities to try your best to help your house win is always very exhilarating!

Q. What is your advice for your juniors?
Try and involve yourself as much as possible. Join a leadership group or participate in the house-based activities and events held throughout the year. This way, you’re able to make new friends from any grade level and it helps make SISHK feel like a second home. It’ll also help you grow individually, making you a more well-rounded student.