In 2016, we invited students from the Middle Years Programme (MYP), Diploma Programme (DP) and Career-related Programme (CP) to take part in the Academic Honesty Competition. Students were asked to submit a poster or short film either individually or as part of a team. The results were outstanding and the standard of films and posters was exceptional. Choosing the winners was a very difficult task for our panel of judges but we are delighted to share with you the winning entries along with an interview with those winners. A huge thank you to all those students who participated in this competition with such enthusiasm.
We spoke to sisters Enasha Shah and Esha Shah, DP students from Fort Myers High School (United States), and winners of the DP poster category, to see what they thought about winning and why they felt academic honesty was an important topic.
What inspired you to take part in this competition?
Enasha: The opportunities that came along with possibly winning this competition—having my art on display, getting recognition from the IB Programme, enhancing my applications—inspired and really just pushed me to enter this competition.
Esha: The fact that academic honesty is such a universal concept and that IB planned to use a worldwide platform to facilitate that message was a big reason why I chose to take part in this competition.
Did you have a clear sense of what academic honesty is all about?
Enasha: To me, academic honesty was important but its own importance made it seem cliché. I knew that academic honesty is needed to allow everyone in the learning community to prosper and reach their full potential, but it didn’t mean a whole lot to me at first just because I never realized how many people aren’t original with their own work.
Esha: I think I had a basic understanding of what academic honesty was, but I didn’t realize how complex it actually was. After delving deeper into the subject, I was surprised by how many forms of academic dishonesty there really are. It was very eye-opening.
How did you decide whether to make a film or create a poster?
Enasha: My sister and I have always loved doing projects together because when we are on one team, we put our minds together and end up producing some creative products! This project allowed us to work together and spend more time together and it’s always so pleasing to see all the praise our work receives!
Esha: We decided to create a poster because I consider photography one of my hobbies and felt like it would be an interesting way to try and convey the message we wanted to get across. My sister also takes photography HL so we thought it would be a fun opportunity to combine what she learned with what I like to do in my free time.
Do you enjoy being creative?
Esha: I absolutely enjoy being creative. Not that the entire programme is based solely on academics, but a large portion of it is and so to be able to combine that academic aspect with a creative outlet was fun.
Enasha: Art is very prevalent in my life. I have been infatuated with art for as long as I can remember, whether it was with your standard pencil sketches, ceramics pieces, or photographs. Creativity is like an alternate universe with no limits or boundaries, which is something we don’t always have the option of experiencing.
What part of your DP studies do you most enjoy?
Enasha: DP studies permit me to explore of all topics in-depth, which is something that prepares me for my future college studies.
Esha: The best part of the program for me is being challenged. It can be a little overwhelming at times, but I enjoy being able to push my boundaries and grow not only in terms of my education, but also as an individual.
What are you hoping to do after you complete your DP?
Enasha: After completing my DP studies, I plan on attending college and from there, I’ll decide what career I want to go into. As of right now, I am very much so undecided. I think the fact that there are so many options and opportunities of what to do in the world is overwhelming, so I am still trying hard to find my one true calling – something I hope I will be very passionate about.
Esha: After completing the programme I hope to continue my education at a university and pave a path to a successful career in possibly business and/or technology.
How did you teachers/ parents react when you told them you had won?
Esha: My parents and teachers were happy for me. They had been supportive throughout the entire process so they enjoyed watching my hard work pay off.
Enasha: My parents and teachers are always supportive with every task I take on, so this task wasn’t any different. I had everyone’s support from the beginning, and when I revealed the news of our victory to them, they were thrilled and very happy. It was touching to see them so proud; I think a lot of what I do is to make all the people I love and admire proud.
What do you feel you have learned from this experience?
Esha: I have learned more than I could have ever imagined about academic honesty from this experience. I learned how to turn a vision into reality and am very grateful for this opportunity. I also learned that it takes a very large period of time to obtain the perfect lighting for just a single photograph.
Enasha: This experience allowed me to further appreciate being a “content creator and not a content imitator.” It also showed me how hard work really does pay off! It just takes a vision, and then making that vision a reality, to achieve great measures.