Cecilia Kim, Princeton

Looking back at my high school experience, I can truthfully say that being part of the IB Diploma program was the best decision I’ve ever made. Although the level of coursework was demanding at times, the lessons I’ve learned and the skills I’ve gained have been invaluable to my academic and personal life. 

I feel that the academic rigor of the program prepared me very well for my university studies – some of the material I learned in my HLs surface time and time again in my courses (some even at the third-year level!). In addition, the studying habits I’ve developed in processing large amounts of complex material, the research competencies I gained during my IAs and EEs, and the collaborative and time management skills have all contributed to my academic successes and ability to find and work in research positions. 

To add, the relationships that I have formed with caring teachers, incredible mentors, and supportive peers will stay with me for a very long time. With so many students globally also being a part of IB, it also gives you common ground to make connections with people that you meet at university (and beyond!). 

 I hope that anyone considering being part of the program takes a leap of faith and challenges themselves as you never know what lessons you’ll learn and what opportunities will present themselves!


Peter Lee, Harvard College

For me, the IB program was an opportunity to explore and push past my limits both in the academics and as a citizen – and I was very pleasantly surprised to discover just how far I could go. I am thankful for everything IB had to offer, including extremely dedicated teachers, academic rigour, and an appreciation for well-roundedness and critical thinking. I feel that my experiences with the program have prepared me for success in post-secondary education and beyond.

Lisha Huang, Rice University

To me, IB was an extensive program that covered many areas of learning and helped me become a more internationally knowledgeable student and young adult.

IB also prepared me for university life in more practical terms. For example, through IB I learned essential skills such as how to accurately cite work and how to balance a heavy workload, extracurricular activities and a social life. In some ways, the environment that IB Students are put into for two years is very similar to the university environment.

Emerson Hsieh, University of California Berkeley

I value an IB education because it challenges me both intellectually and academically. Through TOK, I learned about epistemology, an area of study I didn’t know would be so interesting and relevant for our day-to-day lives. Through the Extended Essay, I had the chance to receive guidance from teachers to work on a project in a manner similar to graduate research. Last but not least, through the rigorous curriculum I gained an appreciation of the knowledge acquired in the classroom by placing it within the broad context of the real world. My two-year experience with the IB Diploma Program has shaped me immensely; the lessons I have learned will definitely benefit me for years to come.

Fred Zhu, University of Cambridge

IB gave me the means to demonstrate my academic capability. IB allowed me to stand out – IB made me feel good about myself.

Lloyd James, Imperial College London

I would wholeheartedly recommend the IB program to anyone who is passionate about the subject that they want to study, who has the dedication and time management skills needed to keep up in the very intensive programme of studies.

Bob Cui, University of Toronto

The IB program at Semiahmoo is a challenging but rewarding curriculum that helps students adapt to the difficulty and workload of their post secondary studies. The IB teachers are some of the best at Semiahmoo who teach you not only advanced course material, but also valuable study habits that are essential to a good performance in university.

Julia Han, Wellesley College

Although the IB was a challenging program, I benefited enormously from what I learned. I would say that the three main things that I got from IB were: 1) Getting into University, specifically in the States and 2) Being prepared for university and 3) gaining broader knowledge and meeting the best teachers ever!

Jannie Chien, University of Toronto

The IB program at Semiahmoo is a challenging but rewarding curriculum that helps students adapt to the difficulty and workload of their post secondary studies. The IB teachers are some of the best at Semiahmoo who teach you not only advanced course material, but also valuable study habits that are essential to a good performance in university.

Emerson Hsieh, University of California Berkeley

The internal assessment and extended essay helped me prepare for undergraduate research and academic publishing. In my mathematics internal assessment, I explored the characteristics of exponential functions on the complex plane. I also dove deep into synergistic antioxidant reactions on my extended essay, an area of organic chemistry that I found interesting. My research during IB gave me the critical thinking skills necessary to formulate hypotheses and interpret results, and I was able to write and publish machine learning papers by my second year of college.

Colleen Xie, University of British Columbia

We weren’t just taught and then tested, following the learning outcomes – we were asked to go the extra mile. We had to be creative in completing our investigations and extended essays, and were encouraged to make social/cultural connections in all of our classes. [IB gave me] the motivation to take personal responsibility for my own learning, and time-management skills.

Angella Lee, Cornell University

Speaking of the IB, I think it was really a wonderful opportunity, which is partially responsible for my success here thus far. Getting to know my studying style was only part of it. I feel much more comfortable learning the material here, because I’ve been briefly introduced to about 50% of it already. Now that I’m learning it for the second time, I find that I can stay on top of material much better, because here, one lecture can go through as much content as I would’ve gone through in two weeks during IB. The more I go through college, the more thankful I am of my IB education. Tell your students to hang in there! Their effort will pay off in college, when they are even busier and the stakes are higher. I’ve learned a lot about tracking in my sociology class, and I know now that enrolling in difficult courses early on can determine a student’s trajectory for the rest of their life. 

Miya Wang, Western University

The IB program was challenging, but what I gained proved it to be more than worth it. The academic challenge was to handle the large amount of work that is similar to university; and now I am breezing through first year as a result of the time management skills that I obtained. The other challenges include IA, CAS and EE; now, with many references from past volunteer supervisors, and research writing experience in almost every field, I have had no trouble finding new commitments and also research opportunities, giving me a significant advantage over other first years who struggle to even keep up with school. Lastly, please be reminded that Semiahmoo is one of the best, if not the best, Canadian school for the IB programme (judging from the other IB students I have met in university); the teachers are stellar and as long as you meet them half way, they will provide you with top quality education.