The gathering pace of Diploma deadlines, the final stages of the EE and CAS commitments make it a hugely busy time for Year 13. And still there’s more, with the decision making and statement writing of the university application season and its looming deadlines.
Although the cycle may be familiar, the CUG Team has a new look to it and we welcome Mr. Paul Rispin to BIS as our new Guidance Counsellor. Paul joins us from Harrow School, Beijing although he is no newcomer to Saigon, having lived here for five years before moving to China. We also welcome Ms. Ngoc Nguyen to the CUG Team in her role as University Guidance Assistant – Ngoc was previously the Education Secretary here at BIS and will gradually be taking on the responsibilities of a full time counsellor.
The expanded team is excited about the year ahead and after just over a couple of weeks back with students, it’s clear it’s going to be a busy and fulfilling period ahead of us. Paul and I have met with many students already to discuss their concrete plans for applications and shifts in focus, many due to campus visits and summer reflection respectively. From the start of Year 12, IBDP students undertake a journey that is a gateway to Higher Education and the summer break before Year 13 often provides respite from the relentless nature of the IBDP and an opportunity to seriously consider the bigger picture and what lies ahead, post-BIS.
As application season approaches and Year 13 gains momentum, it is understandable that previous, loose plans will evolve and crystalise into new forms or different shapes. A factor in this is undoubtedly our University Visits Programme, which sees admissions staff and representatives visit BIS to meet students and answer any questions they may have. These visits occur during morning break and lunchtime and are an excellent opportunity for students to gain information relevant to their specific needs or situations. In the first 2 weeks of term we have already had visits from a number of leading global universities, including the University of Chicago, Johns Hopkins and the University of British Columbia and there is an exciting schedule to come in September with visits from Monash (Tuesday 10th September), UCLA (Monday 9th September) and New York University (Monday 16th September) to name just a few.