The i2 Journey Begins

         I am excited to embark on my i2 journey this fall and hopeful that this program will allow me to explore and solve problems relating to my passions. With Silicon Valley right next to us, it seems fit that SHC has a program that fosters students’ imaginations and minds to tackle complex problems. While this means there will be many hard times in the i2 program, there will also be plenty of fun times, and I have the special opportunity of facing these future hardships with my brilliant i2 class. 

          Having an older sibling in the i2 program alerted me to the fun times that come with being part of this program, such as the annual class trip to different destinations in California. I have already experienced one of four trips, which was the tour of the Academy of Sciences. Having the opportunity to observe thousands of different species of animals and learn how they adapt to vastly different environments was very thought-provoking. One of my favorite activities was the museum-wide scavenger hunt. That encouraged the use of problem-solving in a fun manner, which is something I hope that the i2 program will continue to do in the next four years. It was my first time meeting the i2 group so I was a bit shy, but they were quick to befriend me, and I am excited for future trips with them. 

          I have the privilege of taking Physics and World History with my fellow i2 scholars this year, and they are all friendly and very open to discussion. We have already had some group assignments, and I am already finding myself improving because from them. They are all high-achieving and diligent in their work, which encourages me to become better at my own schoolwork. I’m eager for the next four years learning with them, collaborating with them, and undertaking challenging tasks together. 

          My older sibling didn’t just alert me to the fun aspects of the i2 program, but also to the challenging parts, most notably the i2 project. My first impression of the i2 project, a very intimidating one, came when my sibling began working on her freshman project. At the time, I was stressed out about my own science fair project in 7th grade, and seeing this – a major step up from just a simple science project – made me question if I was even capable of getting accepted into the i2 program. Two years later, I am still a little bit anxious about the annual project and balancing it with my extracurriculars, but I am also optimistic that it will all turn out just fine. 

          One of my major concerns I had when I was accepted into the i2 program was that I wasn’t a student interested in science, which is a cornerstone of the program. I then realized during the first i2 meeting that science doesn’t only mean learning principles and memorizing formulas, but instead (while those things are still significant components of science) emphasizes the inquiry process and problem solving. Problems are an inevitable part of life, so learning problem-solving skills and applying them to real world scenarios will be an invaluable experience. I hope to display the problem-solving skills I learn in this program in the annual i2 project and make it relevant so that the solution to the problem will benefit others. 

          In i2, I hope to learn and apply helpful life skills in a meaningful way and explore my passions with other high-achieving students. These two prospects are what make me excited for the i2 journey ahead.