This past year has been one of the most monumental years of my life; in the past 12 months, I've gone through my last year at the school I've attended for 13 years, gotten into college, turned 18, and reached so many other life milestones that are integral to the experience of growing up. And throughout the tumultuous, yet gratifying year, Global scholars has provided a constant in my academic life that has kept me grounded and involved with the world around me. First, before I continue on about my experience as a member of the 2022–2023 global scholars cohort, I must thank Ms. Diedrich and Mr. Caragher for their relentless support and invaluable guidance throughout my senior year. While the Global Initiatives Program is one of the most unique and esteemed opportunities at Polytechnic School, the opportunity to be mentored by Ms. Diedrich and Mr. Caragher has been the most influential part of the program for me. For that, I am forever grateful.
My experience with global scholars first started in freshman year when, now-fellow global scholar, Ziko E. introduced me to the program. At the time neither of us really knew what the Global Initiative Program was or what it meant to be a global scholar, but we decided to attend a GIP event nonetheless. After that first event, we ended up going to nearly every GIP event possible for the rest of our high school careers, even throughout the Covid years where events were held via Zoom. Looking back I think that the GIP events are the part of the program that have had one of the most long-lasting impacts on me thus far. I still remember GIP events from four years ago and think about the issues that they present in our world today. Moreover, the events have provided me with information and new perspectives that I am able to apply in my other classes at Poly. I often find myself wishing that the events were required for all Poly students because I wish more people in our community knew about the issues outside of our Poly bubble. Additionally, aside from the one exchange student per year, Poly's curriculum doesn't account for many global perspectives at all. And as someone who has taken many Global Online Academy courses with students from different countries, I have experienced firsthand the value of learning from people who live differently from you.
Another major part of my experience as a global scholar has been planning, organizing, and executing my capstone project with Lily G. As I mentioned in my previous blog about our capstone project, I learned so much about the importance of diction when teaching younger students, the amount of effort that goes into planning and teaching a lesson, and working with others. Since teaching the sixth-grade class about fast fashion, I have gained an entirely new and greater respect for their teachers. However, the most gratifying part of this experience is knowing that our efforts this year will have lasting impacts for years to come.