Celebrating the Class of 2020
Exactly a week ago we bid farewell to the class of 2020 as they will embark on new journeys of their lives as adults. Although the first half of 2020 has been met with many trials, our cohort had a lot to celebrate nevertheless. From acceptances into Ivy League institutions to reaching this significant milestone, it was intuitive that we celebrate.
Graduation ceremonies are an important part of the YCIS Beijing tradition and with this being the final stage of students’ schooling life, our teachers, students and parents worked together to ensure that our graduating cohort received a well-deserved sendoff despite the very unique circumstances.
According to Prachi Gupta, Y12-13 Learning Community Leader and YCIS Beijing IB Diploma Programme Coordinator the arrangements required careful and thorough planning. Ms Gupta and her colleagues managed to turn the school’s auditorium into a graduation fit venue for the class of 2020. For students, parents and staff members who were not in Beijing, an online platform was used for a live streaming session – this allowed those in other parts of the world to also experience this monumental occasion.
The YCIS Beijing community truly showed camaraderie with Secondary students in Y10, 11 and 12 taking on the part of being the audience during the graduation– a role they were happy to fill while cheering on their predecessors as. The virtual graduation was in addition a further reinforcement of our school’s prioritization of our students’ health and safety during the time of COVID 19.
Presented by Year 12 students Delphine Quan and Jakob Qin, the programme commenced with the customary walk by the graduating class across our campus to the auditorium while being cheered on by their Primary counterparts - An experience which also serves as inspiration for our younger learners.
During the ceremony, students listened to speeches by their teachers and senior leaders of our school but also received their YCIS Diplomas and awards for excellence in subjects such as the Arts, Chinese, Math and Sports. The Madam Tsang-Chor Hang award was also handed to a student two lived up to the ethos of YCIS in the past year.
Dr Betty Chan Po-king CEO & School Supervisor highlighted the importance of adaptability, as depicted by the class of 2020, by quoting British Historian, Arnold Joseph Toynbee “The key to survival of a civilization lies within its people’s capability to adapt to the changing conditions of its surrounding environment”. She also emphasized the importance of a collective effort for the betterment of the world, echoing the values of YCIS Beijing.
A teacher who has also worked closely with students preparing them for university is Jonathan Mellen, YCIS Beijing UGO Officer. He shared how proud he was of the students and their achievements thus far.
I am pleased to announce that every single student who applied to university this year received an offer” he said. “I am also confident that those applying in the summer after graduating will also find the right fit.”
Speakers lauded the class of 2020 for their determination and strength, and reaffirmed their confidence in their ability to thrive wherever they go. YCIS-BJ Chinese Vice Principal, Dr Rae Wang delivered her message to our graduating class and emphasized the importance of striking a balance between academics and personal passions -finding time to explore and finding new interests. By doing so, she assured students that it will broaden their vision and help them see the world with a different lens. A view similar to YCIS Principles of promoting Global Citizenship. “Reading and traveling complement each other, and the contents of the books will come to life when you see more museums and art galleries” she said. To read Dr Wang’s inspiring speech, click here.
Mark Adams, Educational Director and YCIS Beijing Acting Western Co-Principal also congratulated the class of 2020 and highlighted how their time as Scorpions has prepared them for world.
“We have watched you develop your skills and talents, working cooperatively and collaboratively with your peers, solving problems, being creative and innovative, learning from your mistakes, and using critical thinking as you prepare not just for university or college; but also for work, and for life” he said. To read Mr Adam’s encouraging farewell speech to our graduates, click here.
The new chapter is just beginning for our graduates and we wish them all the best in this new and exciting phase of their lives. Goodbye, from Beijing!