Meet Kyoko T. ’19: a Ridley Lifer who instantly felt welcomed into the school community upon arriving as a Grade 4 student. With an appreciation for the multicultural environment Ridley celebrates, Kyoko has expanded her horizons to studying abroad during her summer holidays. Read more about Kyoko’s open-minded nature and how she intends to get involved in school events as a Prefect.
Why did you choose Ridley?
As a 9 year old, I didn’t really know what it meant to come to Ridley. My parents decided that I needed a school that would better challenge me academically and had a diverse co-curricular programme.
Did you feel prepared coming to Ridley?
I wasn’t feeling unprepared, but I don’t think anything could have prepared me for what Ridley life is like. Ridley is so different from my previous school, and its multicultural community is unique. It took me a little while to get a feel for the community, which was very welcoming.
Who is your favourite faculty member and why?
Ms. Barranca would have to be my favourite teacher at Ridley. I’ve only had her for one year in IB Film, but that class is amazing. She goes so far beyond what is required of her as a teacher, and she genuinely cares for all of her students.
What has been your greatest challenge thus far at Ridley?
Ridley is very different from other schools, with a different approach to learning and life. It is a very multicultural school with students from many different countries. Being in the Ridley environment has challenged my thinking culturally, about myself and about how I approach problems and so on. Adjusting to a new way of thinking, and learning how to be a true Ridleian has been hard, but rewarding.
What has been your greatest accomplishment thus far at Ridley?
My greatest accomplishment at Ridley is winning the Ian Wood ’53 Summer Language Scholarship. I had applied twice, though I was unsuccessful the first time. I decided to take my experience from the first round of applications and do everything I could to improve, so I could achieve my goal of going overseas to study Japanese. All of my hard work paid off and the feeling was wonderful.
What has been your favorite Ridley experience?
My favourite experience at Ridley so far was going to camp in my Grade 11 year. It was the first time I had gotten to be a cabin leader, and the experience helped me to meet more new students. I made some really great friends at camp that year, and it was a great way to start Grade 11.
What part of being a Prefect are you most excited for?
As a Prefect, I am most excited to be able to make events happen for the rest of the school. In the past, Prefects have organized activities that have raised school morale, which have been a lot of fun. I can’t wait to follow in their footsteps and try to bring a little bit of excitement to the students.
How has Ridley prepared you for the future?
Ridley has definitely taught me how to manage my time well and set reasonable goals. Both of these skills have been useful more times than I can count, and will be an asset for my future.
What are your plans after graduation?
After Ridley, I plan to go to university, to double major in Asian Studies – history specifically – and Film.
What advice would you give prospective students about Ridley?
To any new student: there is no right or wrong way to experience Ridley. For some students, their lives will revolve around sports or academics. You should choose the opportunities and activities that you want to do, and genuinely interest you. The point of being at Ridley is to make the most of your experience, and not anyone elses.