8 - Feature Tracy High School - Scholar & Athlete March 26, 2010 O S IB diploma challenging TI Rigorous Requirements: Elite achievement takes years of dedication S By Emily Jerger StudentsOfTheIssue EDITOR-IN-CHIEF tudents looking for a challenge and prestige should look no further than the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma. “The diploma is a very ambi- tious goal. It requires determina- tion and hard work,” senior can- Natalie Craig didate Natasha Dias said. JUNIOR Students attempt to earn the IB Craig won the most diploma, because it helps prepare awards for the them for the future and also gives recent AcaDec them an advan- county competition. Who has been the tage over other biggest influence in college appli- your life? cants. “My brother has had a However, the huge impact on my life by motivating me to be intel- e x t r e m e l y lectually curious and to demanding challenge myself.” Dias expectations may What are your hob- be too difficult for some students. bies? “My time is taken up by In order to even qualify for the school activities. I’m in IB diploma, students must take Key Club, Scientifically six IB classes during both junior Speaking, Science and senior years. Olympiad, and AcaDec. I’m also an IB Diploma Three of those classes must be WORKING on an assignment, senior Julia Hand puts in hours to complete her homework. Candidate, leaving little higher-level, two-year courses, Many students spend hours every night working to complete the rigorous assignments nec- time for other activities.” essary in order to earn an IB diploma. Photo by Emily Jerger/Scholar & Athlete including Theory of Knowledge, If my life had a and the other three must be one- title it would be? get the diploma,” IB Director choice. nate, everything can get done.” “IB: A Story of Love and year courses. At the end of the Terri Sorgent said. “Students who The program also requires 150 The schedule keeps candidates Hate” school year, the students must don’t pass are usually within one Creativity, Action, and Service -ANGELIQUE CORPUZ busy, but the experience can be take tests in each of these classes, or two points away. The differ- hours (CAS). This includes not beneficial, even without taking as well as internal assessments. ence is that those who pass are only community service, but also into consideration the diploma Each test is scored on a scale committed to getting high scores, personal improvement hours. itself. of one to seven, and in order to while others are trying to sneak “Because of the CAS hours, qualify for the diploma, students “The IB program in general, must receive a total score above by.” the diploma candidate must be prepares you with skills that you 24. As if that weren’t enough, can- well-rounded,” senior candidate unknowingly gain throughout the “Every year we have 80 to 85 didates must each write a 4,000 Ryan Ng said. “You can’t just word essay on their topic of years,” Dias said. “ Friends who percent of the candidates actually pass the classes and expect to get have recently graduated from the diploma.” The life of an IB diploma can- Tracy High told me that the fresh- Janine Chua didate is exceedingly stressful. man year at a UC is easier than SENIOR With all of the classes and assess- senior year in IB. I can’t wait for Chua won the jour- ments, it is difficult for students that.” nalism competition at the county Mock to get everything finished. The IB diploma is definitely a Trial competition. “The mantra to live by in IB is great achievement, but not every- What is the most prioritizing, where you maximize one is cut out for the stressful and important thing you have ever learned? your time for assignments,” Dias demanding requirements. “I have learned the signifi- said. “I don’t know if I would rec- cance of taking risks in The normal day for a diploma pursuing dreams. Taking ommend just anyone for the IB that leap of faith can candidate consists of a zero peri- diploma, but I do know that I make all the difference.” od, followed by hours of would choose to do it again,” Dream job? advanced classes, and a night of “I would love to have a job Hand said. “It is definitely worth anywhere from two to five hours that pertains to music and it.” writing because I am pas- of homework. Students who are interested in sionate about these sub- Despite the hectic schedule, ject areas.” going for this prestigious diploma some students handle it well, and Biggest fear? should not take the matter lightly. “I am fearful of spiders!” even make time for sports. “After school I go to soccer “It’s a tremendous commit- What are your goals after high practice, go home to do some ment,” Sorgent said. “Be sure you school? homework, go back to school for want to do it.” “I want to attend a four- cheer, and then go home to finish Candidates will be taking the year university, pursue a career in biology, and a my work,” senior candidate Julia IB tests in May, and will find out ARRIVING in the early morning darkness, Geno Urbano, sideline in music.” Hand said. “If you manage your in July whether or not they will Raina Cheema, and Conrad Jayne attend their Theory of -ANGELIQUE CORPUZ Knowledge class at 7 a.m. Photo by Justin Vargas/Scholar & Athlete time wisely and don’t procrasti- have earned the IB diploma.
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