The IB life: More than just worksheets

The IB life: More than just worksheets

Hillcrest High School is a home to the IB program. On the official Hillcrest IB website, IB is introduced as, “The International Baccalaureate® aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.”

Many students at Hillcrest who are a part of the program are stereotyped to be doing homework 24/7. But more than a few students prove this wrong by being a part of many extracurriculars.

The IB program demands a lot of time. From the class work to Internal assessments and Extended essays, a great work ethic is needed to be in the program.

“I feel like hard work and time is what gets you through the program” says Susan An. Somehow, these hard working students are able to fit in these extracurricular activities.

Being apart of the IB program forces you to do something other than homework because of the fact that you have to do something called CAS hours. CAS is short for Creativity, activity, service. This component of the IB diploma encourages requires students to be involved in a range of activities alongside their academic studies.

Momina Sial gets her CAS hours by doing something she loves, “I debate, I have for years and although it can be considered academic it’s not school work for me. It’s fun and it’s how I earn my hours.”

By the end of the CAS experience students could have about 150 hours “It is recommended that students space out their time and dedicate approximately 3 – 4 hours per week” (

Other students prefer sports over academic based clubs. They don’t just play because CAS is included, but also because it’s their favorite extracurriculars.

Cutler Smith is an IB student who also is on the football as well as baseball team.

“My academics will always come first, but sports are still very important to me,” says Smith. “Being in IB so far has taught me many things, one that is important is the fact that you will make time for the things you love through determination.”

Being on a sporting team as well as IB can be difficult at times, but these students always find a way.

Sometimes these students can’t find the time of the day for all they need to do. But through hard work and determination they are able not only to excel in academics, but also participate in their favorite activities.

“These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.” (IB Philosophy,