On September 22nd and 23rd, students from MYP 4, MYP 5, and DP were invited to meet university admissions officers from over 70 universities, both major institutions and smaller liberal arts colleges, in 13 countries around the world. Participating universities included Leiden University, Pennsylvania State, The University of Hong Kong, Jacobs University, Maastricht University and many others.
As a founding member of the Association of Central European IB Schools, TOIS was able to invite our students to join 34 other IB schools in this highly motivating virtual conference. Such events are a key part of helping students to think about their strengths and skills and to focus more clearly on the areas of studies they would like to pursue after graduating from TOIS.
It is also an opportunity for our students to hear just how highly top universities value an IB education, with its emphasis on Academic Honesty, the Extended Essay, Creativity, Action, and Service, and the pursuit of real academic achievement. In that way, our students are well-positioned to take on the challenge of university admissions.
We are proud to say that the vast majority of our students not only attended, but also engaged proactively with the university representatives. After the fair, TOIS students provided overwhelmingly positive feedback on this opportunity to discover some of the many possibilities that university life has to offer. Students also found it helpful to associate university brands with actual faces and with a “feel” for what campus life at each given university is like.
The admissions officers were happy to present their campuses and course offerings to smaller groups of students and give them the chance to ask questions face to face. It was very encouraging to see students as young as MYP 4 poke around, ask questions and act impressively independently. Since the university journey is a gateway into adulthood, why not start being independent now?
As the TOIS University Counsellor, I look forward to working with our students and their families to find the best path forward for all future TOIS alumni. I strongly encourage every TOIS student to participate in events like this fair. Both those students who know what they want from the future and those who don’t will find useful and meaningful information.
The university application process can be as stressful as staring at a blank page before writing a 4,000-word research paper (DP students would know). But just like that first brainstorming of essay ideas, joining a university fair can slowly start “filling up the page”, chipping away at the many tasks left, gradually leaving fewer and fewer questions unanswered.
We all look forward to the next fair!
TOIS University Counselor – Mr. Jonáš Gray