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CIS Has Given Me Many Opportunities

Canadian International School of Guangzhou 2022-05-13

Student Spotlight is a regular series, where we meet various members of our student community. Let's take a look at student interview.

Rico is a Grade 7 student at CIS. After transferring to CIS, he quickly assimilated into CIS campus life and participated in several academic and extra-curricular activities.

As the director of our Secondary drama productiom ‘This is a Test’ and a speaker at our most recent TEDxYouth@CISGuangzhou, Rico has so much to share about his academic journey at CIS, the academic school, the gratitude he has for his friends and teachers, and the leadership experience he has gained at CIS.

We're thrilled to talk to Rico and share his story today.


Rico, let’s rewind a bit! What was your first impression of CIS?

The first impression that I had was the many basketball courts CIS has! I was extremely glad to see that an international school like CIS promotes and encourages a love for basketball. I also visited the W Hall and watched our principal Mr. Rehman speak. I wondered if I would get an opportunity to study at CIS in the future. Another thing that I noticed about CIS is the wide array of after-school programs. I was, (and still am), glad that the school allows students to pursue their passions. CIS provides students with infinite possibilities!

Along with your classmates, you directed a secondary drama production, ‘This is a Test!’ As team lead and director, what was your role and what did you learn from this initiative?

As the director, I did a lot! I supervised and planned lighting and seating arrangements, and chose specific roles for our actors. I had to use my organization and time management skills wisely. These skills, in my opinion, help with leadership and daily life in ways like managing assignments and tasks.


But the most important thing that I took away from this production is the importance of having support from peers and mentors. As a leader, you need to accept the fact that people might not appreciate things that you do even though it is the right choice. Things can go wrong and mistakes can be made. We all need allies to support decisions and actions no matter what, and this is how we can all learn and grow as a team.


In April, you were a speaker at TEDxYouth@CISGuangzhou, where you spoke about the future of Generation F. What was the biggest challenge for you?

The biggest challenge was practicing on stage. I felt much better practicing in the environment that I was going to be in for the real speech. This opportunity however, was difficult to come by. We only could practice for an hour after school. There were 6 speakers, and each had a window of time to practice and ensure we did not exceed the time limit. To assist myself, I modified my script and only wrote bullet points. This required me to memorize my speech and to think on my feet, making my presentation and delivery more natural and effective. I am very proud to have been a part of such an amazing student-led initiative.

What's your favorite part of life at CIS?

My favorite part is being able to play sports with my friends, surrounded by laughter, camaraderie and sportsmanship. Being able to do that is truly very important to me because of how many online lessons I took for the past couple of years in Canada. And of course, I love being able to take advantage of the other extra-curricular options available in the ASA program. Plenty to choose from!


As you have just joined CIS this year, what advice would you give to new students joining CIS next year?

I would suggest the obvious: make friends quickly and immerse yourself in anything and everything! Once you adjust to your new environment, try to find links back to your old environment, so as to give yourself a sense of familiarity. But you won’t have to try too hard, as the CIS community is very caring and loves to welcome people from all over the world.

Note from the Editor: Special thanks to Rico for sharing his experience with the CIS community. We also had an opportunity to talk to Rico’s mother about how to choose the right school and how to support academic excellence. Stay tuned to our channels!

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