Oriol Casanovas, WISS graduate of 2016, is currently studying medicine at Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, a top 10 medical school in the UK and global rankings. Oriol’s story is unique as he has dyslexia, yet successfully completed his International Baccalaureate (IB) education and gained admission to a prestigious university. Here, he reflects on his IB journey at WISS and his future career in medicine.
“One day I woke up and I thought medicine was a good career choice for me. When we started to study some heart-related diseases in my biology class, I decided it would be a good idea to maybe do an internship at Family United Hospital – to see if I actually liked the job of being a doctor. I shadowed a general surgeon and I found it really quite amusing how rewarding the job was, and the dedication involved. I then knew that being a doctor was a job that I could do for a long time.
The IB Diploma Programme (DP) was a great stepping stone towards my career. IB Learners are Inquirers, Knowledgeable, Communicators, Thinkers, Principled, Open-minded, Caring, Risk-taking, Balanced and Reflective. This is the IB Learner Profile and all these attributes will be important in my career in medicine.
During the Diploma Programme, I had to deal with my reading dyslexia, which makes it harder for me to understand text. I mispelled words and confused one word for another. This meant that I had to spend more effort on my homework and tasks than other kids. However, I see this as a positive, because, by having dealt with my dyslexia I have developed a strong work ethic, a consistent study routine and I learned how I learn best. Additionally, I had the support of my teachers at WISS. They helped me get support from the IB when sitting for my finals; but more importantly the teachers and staff were always happy to assist me with my questions.
If I had the chance to go back in time and choose a program of study, I would choose the DP again. While it was incredibly challenging and a ton of work, it was truly rewarding when it all ended. My classes allowed me to develop a more independent way of thinking, become more open minded, inquiring and principled.
And my advice for any newcomer to the program, I would suggest to get working on your IA’s (Internal Assessments) and on the EE (Extended Essay) as soon as they are handed to you to have as much time for drafts and improving your work, and to start studying early don’t leave it for the last month.”