By Veronica Caraman
I came to Gresham’s School, Norfolk, England from the Republic of Moldova in 2010 to study the IB Diploma Programme (DP) in Sixth Form.
I chose the DP because it provided a broad choice of subjects which included languages, which I love, mathematics and social science, so it seemed a perfect fit for me. Taking part in the theory of knowledge (TOK) classes with people interested in other careers and studying different subjects also meant I could listen to different opinions and arguments. The course itself helped me to develop my critical thinking and challenged my beliefs. I also enjoyed diving into my chosen topic for my extended essay. It was my first proper assignment which took months to prepare and research, and come up with a conclusion that challenged my findings.
Studying the DP at Gresham’s was fun – I studied with pupils from a diversity of backgrounds and cultures which was an enriching experience and taught me to listen and challenge differing viewpoints.
I didn’t realise it at the time, but the DP would develop a number of key skills which would later prepare me for life at university. I learned how to manage my time, become more organized and focus on the bigger picture. TOK and its assignments helped my critical thinking and analysis and I believe overall, the IB gave me an advantage in today’s difficult labour market and helped me to think on different levels and analyse problems from different perspectives. The course wasn’t easy and, with homework deadlines to meet it was sometimes difficult to juggle but, it was all worth it.
In 2014, I took a six-month internship doing economic research for a Dutch economic research and consultancy company. In June 2015, I moved to Germany for a six month internship at Deutsche Bank, in their Investment Strategy team. I am now doing my second internship at Deutsche Bank, this time around in a different area of banking, namely Investment Products. Despite being a tough industry I have always had aspirations to work in banking. This year, I am also working part-time as a HR Manager at EconoTalent, a Dutch staffing company for economists and econometricians.
Studying the DP at Gresham’s and later, studying economics at the New College of the Humanities (NCH) in London helped me to wear different hats and juggle different roles at the same time. It taught me to deal with challenges both inside and outside the classroom to work hard and just go for it, however impossible it may seem at times. I would definitely recommend the IB to those who like to be challenged rather than limiting yourself to just a few subjects. It really helped me prepare for further education and the world of work.
Veronica Caraman studied the Diploma Programme at Gresham’s School in Norfolk, England, UK. She went on to study for a B.Sc. Economics at the New College of the Humanities (NCH) in London. Veronica was awarded the NCH Diploma for Liberal Arts, she took a minor in politics and took courses in Applied Ethics, Science Literacy, Logic and Critical Thinking and Professional Programme.