Sydney and Hyunju: Leading Lights
Star student Hyunju Ju recently joined Sydney Lee as Co-Executive of Student Leadership at Yew Chung International School of Beijing. We meet the two executives and hear about some exciting events coming up.
Please introduce yourselves
[Hyunju] I’m originally from Korea but I’ve been in Beijing for nearly three years now. I’m in Year 12 and studying for the IB Diploma – it’s a lot of work!
[Sydney] I am American but was brought up mostly in the Philippines. This is my fourth year at YCIS Beijing.
What are your roles in Student Leadership?
[Sydney] We are the Co-Executives. Our role is to oversee all the committees within Student Leadership – ensuring they are on track, meet deadlines and stay relevant. We also work closely with all the members of Student Leadership to come up with projects and events for our school.
Why did you want to be a Co-Executive?
[Hyunju] In my first year being involved with Student Leadership I was a little shy and so I wasn’t very active. This year I wanted to challenge myself to become more confident and be more involved. Being a Co-Executive is one way to do that!
How does Student Leadership make a difference to our school?
[Hyunju] We can campaign for things that matter to us such as sustainability in school. We also have the ability to really strengthen our community by hosting events that involve everyone and give students a chance to meet new people.
[Sydney] I think our most important role is to give students a voice. We can help teachers at the school understand what our students need and want.
What projects or events are you working on this year?
[Sydney] We have two big ideas for upcoming projects. The first is Period Project. This project has two purposes. The first is to provide students in impoverished parts of the world with sanitary products. The second is to raise awareness of periods in our own school and let students know that periods are nothing to feel embarrassed by.
It’s already proving to be a really interesting project. We wanted to provide disadvantaged students with reusable sanitary products as these would be a longer-term solution. However, many of these items require a clean supply of water to stay hygienic. Many students just don’t have access to this so we’re still thinking and researching.
[Hyunju] We have also relaunched the student film festival and this year it’s going to look very different. We aren’t accepting long films anymore. Instead there are three categories: GIFs, short videos (6 seconds), and memes. It will be open to all Secondary students and we think there will be some quite interesting results!
What have you learned so far from being involved in Student Leadership?
[Hyunju] My leadership skills have really improved. I am also gaining loads of experience collaborating with people to organise events.
[Sydney] Student Leadership has allowed me to see the bigger picture. Sometimes I am a real perfectionist and I get bogged down in the detail. But overseeing big projects has helped me focus on an end goal. This is something that I am now applying to other areas of life such as college applications and career aspirations!