Constantine “Stan” Rivera had his International Baccalaureate Diploma Program in Southville which apparently brought him to local and international academic competitions … with World Scholar’s Cup (WSC) – Tournament of Champions 2018 as the last yet the most prestigious competing body he has joined. The said competition was held in Yale University participated by 2,300 schools worldwide. Rivera and his team notably bagged major awards including the “Top Filipino Scholar” recognition given to his teammate. Stan’s excellent vocabulary skills, competitive nature, and promising ability to persuade are the utmost skills which qualified him as part of the SISC Academic Varsity, “Stan is a well-rounded person, a complete package. WSC is the culmination of his experiences in past academic competitions that prepared him to be successful”, said Mr. Gio Pastor, SISC – WSC 2018 Head Coach.
“IB allowed me to gain opportunities I would never have anywhere else, and the competitions I joined are proof of that.” Indeed, Rivera never knew what lies ahead but rather through discipline, consistency, and confidence, sudden adjustments didn’t defer his progress as he was, by all accounts, born “brave and always ready”. He valued every second and even assured himself of a productive use of his spare time, having integrated the “learning how to learn” mindset consistently as part of his lifestyle. He allotted a great amount of time and mental work analyzing his areas of improvement, his present state, and strategies that could help him to level up. It’s not only innate intelligence which made up his success but rather his “drive to win”. Moreover, he possesses an appreciative cognizance on how the IB Programme shaped his success not to mention the combined rigor of the IBDP and the demands of a “deserving” World Scholar’s Cup contender.
Surprisingly, Rivera could not join the team’s homecoming with the sudden decision to study in the US. As Rivera juggled his senior year in IBDP and the trainings for WSC, he had braced himself for a more challenging journey conquering a more global academic scene. He later joined Desert Oasis High School in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Rivera humbly shared that he found the subjects easy and convinced the school to put him in the honors section. Rivera’s high intellectual capacity led him to continue the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme without delay. Recently, news came in that he was able to graduate with straight As, a GPA of 4.0, and high honors. Rivera have joined the United States Marine Corps immediately after his recent accomplishment.
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme: Lessons for Life
By: Constantine “Stan” Rivera
The International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme allowed me to become the student I am today. Being part of it taught me time management, interdisciplinary thinking, and the value of grit. In addition, taking the programme allowed me to exhibit core values, such as collaboration, creativity, and commitment to achieve.
I believe that the most important skill I learned was time management. Time management is the key to success in the programme. Learning how to budget my sleeping and waking hours allowed me to realize what is truly important to me, allowing me to cut back on what is not. Properly rationing the time I have to eat, sleep, and study will prove useful in many ways in the future. It is a skill that is invaluable.
The IB Diploma Programme does not teach subjects in isolation. I learned this in practice through the Theory of Knowledge (ToK) and by using the equations and concepts I learned in one subject in order to help me understand another. An example would be math and physics. It is helpful to notice equations for similar problems in each subject. Another notable example would be answering “To what extent” questions. While “To what extent” questions are the framework of Theory of Knowledge, other subjects use them as well. Learning how to answer them in ToK makes it easier to answer them in other subjects as well.
Grit refers to the ability to persevere no matter what happens. I learned what it truly meant while taking the IB programme, which is known to be rigorous academically. I did what I could despite the many challenges I faced. Late nights spent studying before an exam, uncooperative teammates, stacks and stacks of homework; these are just a few examples that I can name off the top of my head. Despite all these hindrances, I chose to push on, and not give up despite whatever hassle all these brought to me.
As a member of IB’s Thespian Society, I was exposed to the intricacies of a play. I learned what really goes on during rehearsals, how hard the students of theatre work in order to ensure that their play is a success, and the drama that comes with it. What’s important is that theatre students used the subject to express their creativity, and I did the same while working for them.
Finally, commitment to achieve was a core value that meant a lot to me. I have joined many competitions, but the most notable one is the World Scholar’s Cup. Juggling IB and the World Scholar’s Cup was no easy task as joining a competition meant I had to manage my time even more. However, it paid off. IB allowed me to gain opportunities I would never have anywhere else, and the competitions I joined are proof of that. Even if I didn’t have as much time to study for IB or study for the competition, I went in with the drive to win, and as a result, I got medals and awards in recognition of what I did.
I would not be the man I am today if I did not take the IB Diploma Programme. As a whole, the rigorous academic program has opened many opportunities for me, expanded my knowledge and has allowed me to better prepare for the future. I recommend it to individuals who are motivated to succeed, despite the challenges they will face.