IB graduates at Utica schools set graduation record during pandemic – Macomb Daily


Despite the challenges of learning during a pandemic, graduates of the Gene L. Klida Utica Academy of International Studies (GLK-UAIS) made history this year.

Ninety-three percent of GLK-UAIS 2021 graduates who took the rigorous International Baccalaureate (IB) exam earned an IB diploma, the highest in the history of the program. Internationally, the overall success rate is 88.9% for the 153 countries.

“This amazing work is a testament to the commitment and hard work of the entire IB team – students, staff and parents,” said Robert Monroe, Director of Community Schools in Utica. “The IB Diploma further distinguishes these graduates as college and career candidates who are well-rounded, community-minded and ready to take on whatever challenges are presented to them. “

To earn an IB degree, graduates must pass a series of international exams that span several weeks.

Assessments measure how well students master advanced academic skills, including how they analyze and present information, assess and construct arguments, and can creatively solve problems.

Students must achieve a minimum of 24 points on exams (out of a maximum of 45 points), and assessments are initially graded by teachers, then moderated by external moderators or sent directly to external examiners around the world.

Preparing for the exam took months.

“UAIS teachers prepare you very well in the first year for these specific types of tests,” said Jack Sanitate, a 2021 graduate who graduated from the IB. “I also reviewed the grades, homework and videos from previous years. The different tests are spread throughout the month of May which I think is an important factor in being able to focus on examining 1-2 subjects at a time each week.

Although IB exams can be similar to advanced placement programs, obtaining the international diploma represents success in all aspects of a rigorous program and demonstrates to future colleges and employers that graduates can write and research effectively. in all areas of their studies.

Catrina Cagalawan, who obtained the international diploma as a 2021 graduate, said the diploma recognizes the hard work and experiences she had at GLK-UAIS.

“For me, the degree is not defined by the number of points I have earned. Instead, the degree is representative of the determination, courage and hard work I have put in throughout my four years at GLK-UAIS, ”she said. “It is symbolic of all my experiences, both academic and personal, and the memories I created during my time at the Academy.”

“The life lessons I learned at GLK-UAIS have already proven to be extremely useful in my first year of nursing school at the University of Michigan, and I know these experiences will inspire me to take risks. , to be a better communicator and to take on challenges. in my career / life goals, ”she said.

His comments were reflected by Sanitate, who said the degree helped him get into the school of his dreams – Duke University.

“I think the diploma is a good symbol of all my hard work in high school that is paying off, and it is known around the world as a highly respected sign of achievement in education,” he said. -he declares. “It has also helped me since I was in college, as such a rigorous and comprehensive education has prepared me for all the challenges I face. “

GLK-UAIS opened in 2008 to provide UCS with the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Program, an internationally respected program that sets rigorous academic standards around the world.

Grades 9 and 10 are enrolled in a two-year program to prepare them for graduation from the IB Diploma Program, offered during their junior and senior years.

The philosophy of the program is to provide its students with the skills to compete both intellectually and socially in any learning or working environment, anywhere in the world.

GLK-UAIS is recognized annually as Michigan’s toughest high school and among the nation’s Top 100.


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