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Luca Coban

Luca Coban

Gap Year working in Munich

2020 BSB Graduate Luca Coban has studied at BSB for 8 years. "Having lived a very privileged and fortunate life attending schools like BSB, I felt like participating in a social/gap year was the right choice. I have also engaged in many service and advocacy activities, which is why I believe that words alone are not enough for change. I will now act upon my words about making this world a better place by helping those not as fortunate as me."

1. Please tell us your plans after graduating from BSB

In my gap year, I will work at a local Munich primary school to support teaching staff and after school care for children whose parents cannot look after them because of work. Finally I believe doing a gap year will enable me to relax as the IB is really a demanding programme.

I know for sure that I will be attending university after my gap year, but what exactly I will be doing, I am not yet sure. I hope that my gap year will broaden my mind and point me in the right direction for my future.

 

2. Please tell us some of the school events you’ve participated in

During my time at BSB I have participated in too many events to remember… Most notably I have participated in BRITMUN for four consecutive years and participated in the last four musical productions too. See Little Shop of Horrors, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Oliver!, Wizard of Oz. I have attended BEIMUN, THIMUN, CISSMUN, WESMUN and other local debate tournaments in my time at BSB.

Furthermore, I also received a scholarship to attend the NAE UNICEF Summit in New York in 2019. Additionally, I have had the privilege to attend many music festivals with BSB, most notably I went to Jakarta in primary school for the FOBISIA festival and in secondary school I went to Kuala Lumpur, Jeju and other regional or local choral festivals. Despite, debate and preforming arts being my main passion I have also participated in some sports teams such as the volleyball team.

 

3.Please describe any charity work that you have participated in? What did you learn from the experience?

Any MUN conference I participated in, involved advocacy and charity. For example at a previous BRITMUN conferences we used cookie sales to support the United Nations “School in a box” charity. The biggest charity event I have participated in was a self-led trip to Myanmar with my peers in 2019. We raised money all year and went to Bagan, Myanmar to teach English at a local school for a week. The money we raised was used to fund the construction of a new kindergarten building in a local village school.

Smaller charities I was involved in during my time at BSB included raising money for the Kerala floods, as well as donating money to a local charity which helps to save stray cats.

I’d say what I learned was that we should never take what we have for granted and always appreciate what we have, this is also something which pushed me to do a social year in my gap between high school and university.

 

4.Which one is your favourite school trip/residential? What do you like about the trip?

Every trip I have taken with BSB has truly been a unique and exiting one. I would say that the Tanzania trip was definitely one of my favourite residential trips, because we went all the way to Arusha, Tanzania to see how local people live, build key-hole gardens for particularly poor families, and help to build gardens for food in a local school, all while having an amazing time with my friends sleeping in a national park on safari.

 

5.Please describe 2 of your best memories of your time at BSB.

One of my favourite memories at BSB was the time I spent in rehearsals after school, I really connected with the cast and my teachers, and we grew to become a really close group of friends who supported me no matter what. Though it was hard work, it was arguably one of the best memories I had at BSB. 

Another favourite memory of mine at BSB was meeting people from all over the world and connecting with them. Though I had lots of friends from my home country, I also had lots of friends who came from very different cultures than mine and it was always interesting to learn more about our world this way.

 

6.What was your favourite IB subject?

If I had to choose a favourite component of the IB, I would choose CAS, though some people may argue this is the easiest part of the IB, I must say, participating in CAS projects has allowed me to learn about things like business, dance and advocacy, The CAS programme helped me to keep a balanced life style which not only involved studying but also time for fun and physical wellbeing.

Out of the six subjects I took I’d say that Biology was one of my favourites and though I was not particularly amazing at it, I really liked the classroom atmosphere, my teacher and the actual content of the subject. Another reason why I liked Biology so much was because we went on a one-night field trip to Miaoliang, which again was one of those amazing opportunities I had to bond with my friends.

 

7. Who is your favourite teacher?

This is the hardest question I’ve been asked so far, simply because I have a lot of favourite teachers at BSB and it would be unfair to just choose one, because so many have supported me over the years and I would not have managed to accomplish so much without most of them.

That being said, the contributions that Ms Clark, Director of Performing Arts and Ms Warrier, Assistant IB Co-ordinator have made in my day to day life at BSB are simply invaluable. I highly doubt that I could have managed to do so much, so well without their support every single day over the last two years of IB Diploma.

 

8.How has studying at BSB helped you achieve academic success/ university acceptance/ personal development?

BSB has simply always been a hospitable and welcoming environment to me, I feel like the school really understands how students work. Emphasis is not simply placed on achievement but also on effort and how to improve, which means that over the years I have developed and increased my potential.

In our everyday classes our teachers talk to us about what skills we need to possess by the time we get to university. In addition to this our teachers come from many different countries so they often know how the systems in different countries work quite well, which makes it easy for us students to get an idea of what it may be like. We also offer university guidance services to our students which is free for us to use anytime and enables us to attend many university fairs and directly contact university representatives.

 

9.What do you think is special about BSB?

I think BSB has many things that are special about it but if I were to pick one thing it would be that it is part of a global community of schools known as Nord Anglia Education. This enables us to easily communicate between schools and even participate in collaborations with Juilliard, MIT and most relevant to me, UNICEF.

As I mentioned previously, I had the privilege of attending the NAE-UNICEF summit in New York over the summer, as well as visiting the NAE camp in Tanzania and our chalet in Switzerland. Being part of such a wide and global community of schools is a truly unique experience. 

 

10.What advice do you have for other students at school?

My piece of advice would be to engage yourself as much as you can, seriously like immerse yourself in the school take full advantage of everything we have to offer, it is genuinely a once in a lifetime opportunity, which very few other schools can offer you. If you are unsure of participating in something, just talk to your teachers, they know you and what it’s like to be in school, so they always have good advice at hand for you.

Should you ever feel like our school is missing something, then speak up, I have found that our school is receptive to feedback, after all we started a snack shack business, started recycling, reduced canteen waste etc., so if you want something to be changed, do not feel hesitant or afraid to speak up because someone at BSB will listen to you.

Other than that the only advice I have for other students is to work hard, but also play hard your body is not designed to study all the time and you can afford to take some time off and I promise it wont be detrimental to your results as long as you can find a good balance.