What Actually Matters

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I stand between my aunt and my sister in May of 2013

*Written on 3/16/2012*
I have worked my way to college. You may wonder- how is Si-Long able to go so far into education with only a few years of speaking English Language? Let me show you the secret and tell you what actually matters.

As you can see in my bio, I went to National Experimental High School (NEHS), located in Hsinchu Science and Industrial Park (HSP). This so-called “high school” is not just a high school. “High” in the name means prestigious. NEHS is actually a magnet school community with five different departments: Kindergarten, Elementary, Middle, High school, and Bilingual department.
This is a school for children of those who work inside the perimeter of HSP….Well let me rephrase it to ‘school for children of scientists, engineers, programmers, doctors, business professionals etc’…..school for smart children of smart parents, easy enough okay?
NEHS is a respected and well-admired school in Taiwan, filled with many students who are talented, brilliant, intelligent, gifted, you name it. This school name was so well-established that many parents work hard to find a job inside HSP, in order to let their children attend this school.

What was famous about this school was for its students excellence, especially the High School Department. In this department, unlike the other departments, students are allowed to study at this school regardless if either parent work in the park, but as long as they meet the requirement on the High School Entrance Exam. The requirement score is, obviously, very high. NEHS even provide dorms for those high school students who come from other counties. Students are not only known for their remarkable academic performance, but a so in art, instruments, and athletic fields. On the downside…you can only imagine the stress level in that school. If a student doesn’t do well academically, he or she will be advised to transfer to another school. Many dropped out because of stress before that even happens….

Well, anyways, let me continue my point before I get too carried away talking about my past. Obviously, as you can see, my flamboyant and or ‘tomboy-ant’ behaviors didn’t get along with the school very well. Oh and keep this in mind, I went to NEHS from kindergarten through middle school. My mom has been working at the administrative building in HSP even before I was born.

And many people ask me why did I decide to come to the U.S., 6,000 miles away from my homeland? Honestly? It was because I was depressed. My experiences with NEHS weren’t all that pleasant. However, if I had gone to some other school, I don’t think I would perform as well as I do today, which also answers many people’s questions about how I was able to make it through the language barrier so easily.

In the United States, however, I found a dramatic change in my life.
I picked myself up after attending Lakeside High School. There were so many opportunities provided outside the field of books and tests, and less competition -(I mean really? Studying algebra in 10th grade?)
Students can join multiple after school activities, and they can be officers of multiple clubs. Since my aunt and uncle wasn’t able to pick me up right after school, I made efficient use of my time participating in after school activities. I was able to get good grades and become a leader of many organizations. Furthermore, I didn’t have to worry about wearing uniform, having my name and scores ranked with everyone else, and cutting nails at a certain length.

Forgive my language if you will, but I have to say this, scores don’t mean a DAMN thing.
NEHS was a very hard school to me, and it still is today. It didn’t teach me to make good grades, but it definitely taught me to always work hard at a very young age and kept in mind that I can always do better. Lakeside High School is one of the top schools in this area, and I was able to walk my way through graduation.
If it wasn’t for all those extra circular activities and the recommendation letters from my teachers, I wouldn’t be able to make it to college because my SAT score sucked. Many of the schools denied me because of my SAT score; Augusta State University (ASU), however, took me in and recognized me as a person instead of a splendid SAT score. It was a living hell back in senior year of high school preparing for SAT, AP exams, and Subject Tests. Even though my grades at Lakeside was decent, my over all GPA was low because I was still in Taiwan during 9th grade, and my scores back then SUCKED big time.

I’ll say this again, scores don’t mean a DAMN thing.
Just look at how well I’m doing today and you’ll understand. I, literary, suck at testing. However, I am best at giving out everything got. I work hard for myself and to understand what I learned, not for the sake of getting a good grade. I am not afraid to admit mistake or ask questions. What actually matter is your attitude. If you got an attitude of working hard, good grades will show. A number on your test doesn’t reflect who you are. Work hard to learn, your reward will soon follow.


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