Exploration of the IB Program


Picture by Nikil Sunku

   The new school year has finally began, and there are new friends to be made. With new classes and programs available to students, it is easy to meet new faces. The International Baccalaureate (IB) program is an exception to this idea.

   The IB program does not completely negate the idea of making new friendships, but it does have a reputation for isolating its students. Due to the limited size of people interested in the program, many are restricted to a tight schedule and are somewhat cut off from their original social rings. It is also noteworthy stating that this is an issue only in the  classroom environment, so IB students can still reach out to their non-IB companions during break, lunch, and passing periods.

   For those who do not know, the IB program is international and based off of a two-year set curriculum that challenges students all across the globe. In addition to the global curriculum, the IB teachers “love what they do and it makes the classes enjoyable,” according to Rayen Strasser-King from the IB class of 2018. However, he also goes on to say that students “have to be committed to do IB and if not, they’re just going to drop out.” In general terms, the IB  curriculum has a reliable staff, but the program’s courses require determination and a love of learning.

   Although there are many pros and cons to IB, the experience behind it relies mostly on the class and how students interact with each other. For example, IB student Triveni Patel mentioned that the first few weeks of IB are not very eventful because “no one has broken out of their comfort zone to socialize with their peers in IB yet.” However, in given time, she hopes that “people will open up to each other, making the entire IB class one big family.”

   To add more perspective, another IB student, Jalen Puzon, states further, “Like any other class, people have to open up to one another to make a connection.” In a nutshell, IB is very exclusive in a class environment, but eventually, although not at first, the students of the class look out for one another and strengthen friendships.

   The International Baccalaureate program can be a great experience for some but not for others. Much of it relies on perspective of the incoming class. IB will not be spectacular for everyone, but it will definitely be different than an AP course route or a regular class program.