Hello, to whoever is reading this. My name is Eric – a Korean-born Canadian. This page will tell you, as the title says: All About Me.
Background History: I was born in 2008, in a country in Asia called South Korea. Wanting for me to have a less pressuring and more diverse education, my parents made the choice for our family, consisting of me, my mother, father and my younger brother to immigrate to the country of Canada.
We had immigrated to the province of Saskatchewan for a multitude of reasons having to dowith the process of immigrating, but had not taken into account the fierce weather conditions and so had found it extremely difficult to live there.
We survived, and after a gruelling month or so of living there, we decided to pack our bags one more, and move to the province of British Columbia, where we are still living in to this very day. Some may enjoy living in the province, but for me Saskatchewan only brings back bad, snowy and cold memories. Additionally, I could not speak any English during my time there, which made it even more difficult.
An Inspiring Figure: Normally when a person is asked about an important/inspiring person whom they respect, they answer with one of two options. The first is naming a celebrity, and the second is a close family member – both of which are completely valid opinions. For me, although I find the two previous options just as important- it is a friend; a very important one who made my life worth living. This does not imply in any way that I am suffering from depression; it is just an exaggeration. I believe it was when I was in grade 2. I had spent two years in the country of Canada, and I had now gotten much more accustomed to the language of English. My parents saw this as both good and bad. One of our primary reasons for coming to Canada was because my parents believed that English was a language that was important and used all around the world, but once I started to use it more than I used my native tongue, they began to worry I might lose it altogether. They decided to send me to an extracurricular Korean school. On the first day there, I had been both glum and mad; somewhat pathetic – now that I think of it, but I had a ‘playdate’ on that very day, which I had to postpone. Searching for a way to express my anger, I went to the whiteboard and drew a disfigured picture of one of the assistant teachers. I was told to go back and sit down, and just as a did, another student, who happened to be late walked in. As it happened to be, he also attended a martial arts class with me, and so he sat next to me, as we only knew each other. Our friendship was only apparent in the Korean School; we sometimes ignored each other altogether in any other place.
An Inspiring Figure (Cont’d) + An Important Program A few years later, a couple of months before I graduated elementary school; a teacher who had assisting in teaching the gifted program told me to try applying for the MACC program. I got in. Although happy, I somehow felt alone at the same time, for none of my friends were in the program; most did not even know Hillcrest was a middle school – I was complaining about this very fact in Korean School to the friend, when he told me that he had also gotten accepted into the program, at the very same school. We quickly bonded over the course of three years (the amount of time I spent in the program), and although somewhat clumsy, I truly came to respect him. I also came to love the MACC program. When describing it to younger siblings or people who had come to ask me about the benefits of the program, I explained it quite simply; I told them it was the gifted class but in full time. You were constantly challenged, but was awarded for it with satisfaction, and, a bonus if I might; the challenges themselves were sometimes the award – they constantly teased your brain, and made my time in middle school extremely enjoyable. To this day, choosing to be a part of the program has been one of the best and most important decisions of my life, for it shaped a lot of what I am doing currently.
STEAM and why I chose it: To be frank, the STEAM program was never my first option. I had applied for the IB program at Port Moody Secondary School as my first option, but because I had decided to not attend PMSS at all if I did not pass the IB exam, I began looking for something at Terry fox that would enrich my learning.
I came across two options; the first was to enrol in an honours course, and the second was to join a program that a student/friend I knew said was going on at the school; STEAM. I happened to pass the IB exam – not particularly with flying colours – and had seriously considered it. I decided not to go because of a couple of reasons (reasons which I prefer not to specify), and since I had also been accepted into the STEAM program, I chose to do it over regular Honours. In short, like I had said, STEAM started off as a plan B.
As it would turn out, joining the program was the first (hopefully of many to come) good decision I have made in High school. The primary reason for my liking of it is that the courses change on a ‘linear’ schedule, and not in terms of the two semesters. This system proved to be extremely beneficial to me, a student who has come from a middle school that would normally not go to Terry Fox. When coming to this school I had to restart from scratch making friends, and so being in the same class with the set of students in our cohort made it much easier to befriend said students. As you may already know, by high school, most students are already sure which education path they will pursue, even if they haven’t decided on a specific career. You can most definitely tell apart the ones who have completely given up on their education to focus on a sport from the ones who want to further enhance their knowledge, and participate in clubs that support their ‘motive’. STEAM, from what I have seen, is full of people in the second category. This fact makes the entire class feel more ‘sophisticated’ than the other classes and electives I am taking, and helps do more. (My semester 1 English class was so bad that multiple people failed or got an extremely bad mark, with the teacher even storming off on multiple occasions from all the foolishness being caused)