Hi Jeffrey, first of all congratulations on receiving a place at the prestigious IMG Academy. You must be very excited! Firstly, what was the application process like for you, and did you find any part of it particularly challenging?
Preparing for the TOEFL and SSAT was challenging for me, particularly the reading section. I spent at least 2 hours on test preparation everyday.
Jeffrey trying out the basketball court during his visit to IMG Academy.
What were your main reasons for applying to IMG Academy?
I chose IMG Academy because they offer excellent sports facilities, and during my visit to the campus I was really impressed. Several outstanding athletes that I admire also graduated from this academy such as Andre Agassi and Maria Sharapova, who are both world-famous tennis players.
Can you give any advice to other students who are looking to study at an overseas school?
Start preparing early and find time to study everyday. My academic grades in a range of subjects were an important part of my application, and without good grades this would have affected my application.
Being able to communicate well in English is also important – the student bodies at boarding schools in the U.S. are very diverse so excellent communication skills are quite important. At IMG I will be in a purely English speaking environment and will also need to communicate with other students from different backgrounds.The interview in the application process is key, so students need to practice their interview skills during their preparation. Before the interview, it’s essential to learn as much as possible about the schools you will visit and think carefully about why you are applying for this school, what contribution you can make to the school, and which areas the school can help you improve upon.Lastly, find something you are truly passionate about, and persist in that one thing. For me, basketball is my passion, and it has taken courage and hard work to pursue it. Now I am getting closer and closer to my goal.
Jeffrey (far-right) with his fellow students.
How do you think your experience at Hyde Academy has helped prepare you for IMG Academy?
I transferred from a good local public school to Hyde Academy when I was in grade 8 as I realized my passion was playing basketball and that I wanted to go to IMG. It took me a lot of courage to make such a big transition but I was really determined – Hyde Academy has offered a lot of support in preparing me for an overseas school. Jennifer, our school Administrative Principal, and Lian, our Admissions Director, both accompanied my mother and I on a visit to a number of boarding schools in the U.S., and have provided a lot of guidance and support.Hyde has also really helped my academic performance in all subjects, especially my English, which has improved a lot over the past year, along with my TOEFL and SSAT scores. I really like my teachers who are very kind and I am grateful for their support. In addition to this, playing bass is a new hobby of mine and both the music teachers, Mr. Zhang and Mr. Wei, have been very encouraging.Since arriving at Hyde Academy, I feel at peace because I have been able to clearly focus on achieving my goal and pursuing basketball abroad at IMG.
And last but not least, what inspired your passion for basketball?
I love basketball and my dream is to play at a high-level. My sports idol is Michael Jordan, he’s like the God of Basketball. I play almost everyday, and there was even one time when I played for ten hours straight! Basketball is really a part of my life.
Thank you for your time Jeffrey – we will be sad to see you leave but cannot wait to hear more from you once you have started your journey at IMG Academy this August!