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Local seniors take on world issues

Rising Hillsboro High School seniors Alicia de Jesus Hernandez and Alexa Pupillo were selected to attend International Baccalaureate (IB) World Student Conferences this summer. First hosted in Oregon at Oregon State University in the summer of 2010, IB World Student Conferences are now held every summer in three different locations around the globe.

This year’s locations were Brisbane, Australia; Montréal, Canada; and Bath, United Kingdom.Photo Credit: COURTESY PHOTO - Alexa Pupillo (left) and Alicia de Jesus Hernandez joined students from around the world at the IB World Conferences over the summer. Alexa went to Canada and Alicia traveled to Australia.

The conferences bring together IB students from around the world to collaborate in the development of innovative solutions to global issues.

Students hear from inspiring speakers, engage in thoughtful inquiry focused on the conference theme in small sessions, and participate in excursions and recreational activities.

De Jesus Hernandez attended the conference in Australia, where the students took part in plenary sessions, heard from high profile thought leaders, worked in teams to build their understanding of the many benefits and challenges related to empowering diversity, and explored how they can make a positive impact in their own communities.

Pupillo attended the conference in Canada, which encouraged deep reflection on some of today’s most pressing human rights issues and provided the participants an opportunity to discuss and develop new approaches for addressing human rights violations.

Themes included the rights of indigenous peoples and children, and how technologies can be used to advance human rights actions.

“This is an amazing opportunity for students,” said Sil Scott, IB coordinator at Hilhi. “IB is unique in that it provides students with an international experience and way of thinking that extends beyond immediate community.” “We are extremely proud of these two students as they have shown the ability to take a risk and explore new opportunities for learning,” said Arturo Lomeli, Hilhi principal.

Hilhi is the only high school in the Hillsboro School District that offers the International Baccalaureate diploma program.

The program was created in 1968 as a demanding pre-university course of study that prepares students for culminating examinations.

Hilhi has offered the IB diploma program since 2001 and encourages all students to take one or more qualifying classes.

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