K¹² International Academy Graduate reflects on her Academic Journey
By Jasmine Chuah
Enrolling in K¹² International Academy was a huge leap for me considering the fact that I was previously enrolled at a local Chinese medium school where the system was largely based on rote memorization and repetitive academic exercises. The idea of personalizing a weekly schedule, working with teachers on a one to one basis for academics, adding clubs, choosing courses from an extensive catalog, and engaging with other students located all over the globe just blew my mind till this day, graduation 2014.
I still stand amazed at how K¹² International Academy has drastically changed the way I think, respond, and carry myself. Although it was initially challenging to maneuver to a whole new direction, the immense support from the academic coaches, counselors, and teachers tremendously contributed to the eventual adjustment and enjoyment. I was very impressed by my teachers’ alacrity to be in constant communication with students and the willingness to help us achieve our academic goals. Unlike the lack of teacher support that I previously experienced, I felt comforted to know that I have teachers who are well versed in the syllabus and are always there to clarify any uncertainties I may have. Apart from that, I also had the opportunity to be in close communication with my school counselor. Having someone who fulfills the role of assisting me throughout the process of crafting out a high school transcript and getting me acquainted with college admissions was something almost unheard over here in Malaysia. I am ever thankful for my counselor who provided me with information on colleges, majors, and careers I was interested in. But more importantly, I picked up the habit of taking ownership of my high school career and college plans.
Throughout my journey at K¹² International Academy, I am consistently reminded that I should be the one in the driver’s seat who is responsible for making the decisions. Although I had my parents, teachers, mentors, and counselors who are there to advice and support, I realized that I needed to take the initiative, whether it was networking with college admission officers, researching about the possible careers, or finding out about a summer enrichment program. After all, I will be the one living out the goals and plans that I have made. Here at K¹² International Academy, I had an academic coach who purposefully reached out to my family and I on settling the technical matters such as signing up for the courses, making sure that I stay on top of my academics and am receiving all the help I need. I can still recall the time when I received relatively low average percentage on English and my academic coach actually set up a Skype session to discuss the challenges I was encountering. As intimidating as it sounds, I must say that it was equally comforting to know that someone is out there keeping track of my progress with the goal of providing me the support I need to succeed. In addition to my parents, the teachers, academic coach, and counselors made up of what I like to call – The X team. These were the people whom I invested my time and energy in getting acquainted with because I knew that they had a passion in impacting lives, enlightening one life at a time.
Being a part of K¹² International Academy also opened the door to exploring a wide array of courses. To me, these courses represented all the possibilities and knowledge that were for me to explore and pursue. Never had I imagined that it would be possible to enroll in courses like Creative Writing, Economics, or Entrepreneurship. For example, I became aware of the power of writing when I enrolled in the Creative Writing course. It was through this course I realized my passion of penning my thoughts, opinions and observations. Till this day, completing this course remains a memorable milestone because I finally overcame my fear of writing effectively. For the first time, I had the opportunity to go beyond the usual education model which only had space for English, Math, Science, and History and absorb the extraordinary.
In time, my appetite for learning just augmented and I was able to build my tapestry of interests in life. Courses over here were not only the gateway to knowledge as I had the opportunity to engage in clubs. These clubs provided me leadership opportunities and an experience to build a cultural understanding with my peers who are located all over the globe. For example, I had the privilege of experiencing a global phenomenon literally when students decided to do their part in giving back to the community. These actions came in different packages, be it volunteering at local soup kitchen, singing at an old folks’ home, or washing cars to raise funds for a charitable cause. Although we were engaged in our respective endeavors, I realized that our actions collectively reiterated the idea of playing our part as citizens of the world. As time went by, I was inspired to strive for more in this area of my life and eventually made myself available at a refugee home by teaching English as a second language. The interaction I had with my club moderators and fellow students made me feel compelled to shaping my platform as an individual who is capable of activating my abilities, skills, and knowledge I have attained to make a difference in my community.
My family and I are every grateful for all that K¹² International Academy has to offer as a school, support system, and more importantly a family. I have been tremendously blessed by the vigorous learning atmosphere, inspiring teachers, and high-achieving students. Embarking on this journey was never an easy decision to be made however; it is a necessary step towards achieving an extraordinary level of success.