Class of 2019 Graduates in Our Eyes 

Graduates' Speech

Miji Kim

Don’t be afraid of changes. To quote the famous business teacher and former gas station attendant and KFC employee, Mr. Klocek, “the most important strategy of a business is to be able to adapt to both radical and incremental changes and that ability is what makes the business successful.” We live in the era where everything changes in the blink of eyes. Sometimes, those changes occur so rapidly that we lose our sense of direction or end up realizing that we were misguided all along, which often leads to frustration, regardless of how much we gained on the way. However, here is the thing: your tireless hours will never go unnoticed. If regretting doesn’t change anything, focus on creating a tomorrow that you won’t regret over. 

The past three years at XLIS helped me realize my reason for existence and discover what truly interests me. I wouldn’t be who I am today, had it not been for such a caring family and the many warm-hearted teachers, friends and classmates who supported me through my crazy meltdowns, constant confusion, and of course my math nightmares.

So I want to say, challenge yourself against numerously many uncertainties and ambiguities in life, for they allow you to push beyond the predestined capacity of human beings. There is no limit to what you can do, but there can be you limiting what can be done. As my favorite website states, “Work hard, have fun and make history.” 

Hee Jung Yang

Do you remember 2 years ago when all the DP madness began? We did not have senior students to learn from or at least ask what to do next. Venturing down a new path is always scary. You have no idea whether each step leads forwards, backwards or just gets you stuck in the middle of nowhere.

I don’t think it’s just me who wanted to give up in the middle of the course. It was a living hell, honestly. It was tough. Even though it wasn’t easy, look! Everyone is here today to graduate. No one in our class has been left out. We were able to make it not because we were geniuses, but because we worked together by understanding our weaknesses and strengths. That collaboration, that care, that mentorship, support and friendship is what got us here. 

Messages from Leaderships

Lily Liu  (Head of School  Global Ed.D

Dear parents, relatives, members of faculty, staff and other distinguished guests and the most important members of the senior class of Xi’an LiangJiaTan International School, good afternoon! Thanks to everyone for coming today to celebrate the graduation of our first ever cohort of XLIS high school Diploma Program.

This year, our school has reached an important milestone in moving to XLIS new campus that we are sitting in today. This has effectively increased the size of our school and this, with the eventual addition of our full high school program, means that we have an even greater responsibility to think about why we are all here and make sure that we can confidently send our graduates out into the world.

On the wider world stage, divisions and conflicts based on differences are being played out to sometimes disastrous consequences. However, the class of 2019 have embraced differences and used this as a platform to learn from each other, cooperate with each other and build strength through diversity. This is a class that will definitely lead by example; showing care, consideration, and ultimately respect for others of different cultures, races, and socio-­economic backgrounds. Your truly international outlook is to be commended.

Through the Diploma Programme (DP) core, you have reflected on the nature of knowledge, completed independent research and undertaken a project that often involves community service. Seniors; the diploma you are holding in your hands now is just your learner’s permit for the rest of the drive through life. We don’t know what kind of person you are trying to become. Are you going to be a designer or a scientist, a politician or a musician? Please remember, you don’t have to compare yourself with the next person. All you must do is be willing to compare with yourself. 

You have so much to offer the world. Go forth and take your place. This world needs you. It needs your kindness, your caring natures, your consideration and thoughtfulness of others. Your grace and humility are outstanding. Use that along with your other laudable skills to make humanity that much better. Creativity is a renewable resource. Be as creative as you like, as often as you like, because you can never run out. Be innovative and do something different than anybody else has done. Your education is a dress rehearsal for the life that you lead.

Before you leave the blue dragon theater today, go and see your mother and father. Give them a hug and a kiss. Their sun rises and sets on you. You will never know how much they love you until you have children of your own one day.

You have made it to graduation, which took patience, dedication, and a lot of hard work. You are to be commended and have earned our respect. Well done, class of 2019! It is your moment.  Congratulations!!!


Daun Yorke (Secondary Principal Ed.D Candidate) 

We are so very proud of our first cohort of IB Diploma Programme (DP) Graduates. They have made history as the first DP class of XLIS. The DP is one of the most rigorous and well recognized pre-university academic programs in the world. With their predicted DP results, our students have been accepted into top universities throughout the world, including the US, Canada, UK, Malaysia, Korea, Switzerland and China. Many will be given advanced placement credit due to their successes in their higher level subjects. This success is in no small part due to the support of our incredible IBDP teachers. All of our DP teachers have IB certification to teach their subjects and most have Master’s degrees with some currently completing a Doctorate in education. Our teachers are dedicated to their craft and our students have benefited greatly from their love, support and commitment. Good luck to all of our graduates as they embark on bright new futures in university.

Jaimala Quinlan (DP Coordinator MYP Individual & Society Teacher and DP Geography Teacher)

These students are our first graduating class for the Diploma Programme at XLIS. This has been a life-changing experience for all of them. As their Coordinator and homeroom teacher, I have learned to appreciate them and support them throughout all their ups and downs. They have become resilient youngsters who appreciate hard work, diversity and the importance of collaborating and accepting each other. I wish them all the best in their future and I know that they will bring a positive change wherever they go.

 My message to you is that go to the work ahead of you. Be ready to face the future. Be ready to face all the challenges that lie ahead of you, because I can tell you that you have to be prepared. You are wonderful young adults who will make a difference in this world. We do need young adults who can think out of the box, who can make differences and can empathize with the community. 

The Trend of Graduates Over the Years  

University Offers (Class of 2019) 

•       Queensland University

•       Nottingham University, Malaysia

•       Nottingham Trent University

•       York University

•       University of Portsmouth

•       De Montfort University

•       University of Sydney

•       University of Bradford

•       University of Glasgow

•       Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences

•       University of Indiana Bloomington

•       University of California, Santa Cruz

•       New York University

•       University of California, Riverside

•       California Polytechnical State University (CalPoly)

•       Concordia University

•       University college of London

•       University of Sheffield

•       University of California, San Diego

•       Carroll College

•       University of Toronto

•       University of Manchester

•       Santa Clara University

•       University of Georgia

•       Rose-Hulman University

•       Pennsylvania State University 

University Offers (Class of 2018 and Before)


University of Toronto

Queens University,Canada   

Seoul   University,Korea 

Ateneo De Manila University,Philippines 

University of  California 

University  of California, Santa Babara 

Washington State University

University of Washington 

University of  Massachusetts

University of Kentucky 

University of Oregon 

State University of New York 

State University of New York 

Ohio University 

Sung Kyun Kwan University 

Dongguk University 

Messages from Teachers

Michael Koivusalo

MYP/DP Mathematics Teacher

I know that the amount of time that I taught each of you was quite variable, but I’d like to think that I was a constant in your experience here at XLIS. I hope that the IB programme taught you something. I hope it taught you how to differentiate right from wrong and I hope that you can easily integrate all of your experiences into your futures. 

Emma Yang

Head of Chinese Department

I am impressed by all the DP2 students with their resilience and persistence over the past two years. I’ve witnessed their confusion at the beginning, as no one actually knew what DP course meant, and then they turned to be “shocked” with stress and anxiety. However during the two years, no one addressed giving up. They kept trying. I am also very proud of my students; of their great progress in the Mandarin Ab Initio course. They came to China as a beginner level in Chinese language, now they can communicate with Chinese people, sing in Chinese, and even “argue” with me in Chinese.  I wish them good luck and hope they have a promising future with love, joy and happiness. 

Arif Minha

MYP Coordinator/ MYP Individual & Society Teacher

My daughter Seher Arif completed her Diploma Programme graduation at XLIS. I am extremely thankful to XLIS and all the teaching staff for guiding my daughter though this challenging course. My daughter joined XLIS in the year 2017 and has since developed into a responsible and focused learner. The amazing campus with excellent resources has really helped her become a 21st century learner. The support and guidance at the school transformed her personality and prepared her to face the rigor and demands of university education abroad. I hope that XLIS keeps educating the national and international community through the IB programme and reaches unparalleled heights in the world of education.

Susan Kim 

MYP & DP Korean Literature Teacher

Overall, they have had a successful start in High School. They are very punctual members of the class and I looked forward to being greeted by their positive attitude every morning. It is pleasing that they enjoyed my Korean lessons as they learnt about a variety of issues and they had the time to discuss them with their peers. Even though they had sometimes found challenges, they always seem cheerful and did their best. This has been demonstrated by the variety of extracurricular activities that they have been involved in, discussing, essays, critical thinking and presentations.

Lars Jefferson

MYP/DP Music Teacher

I was fortunate to have three DP students graduate this year.  The program changes you.  The students who entered DP Music in the fall of 2017 are not the same.  They are more confident, capable and of course more mature than when they started.  We went to a composition workshop in October of 2017.  Miji went from a very timid and unsure student to a performer in 3 days.  She had no composition experience but had the premier of her arrangement performed at the secondary concert.  I remember traveling with Yi Bo to Luxembourg for his first AMIS band festival.  He was so critical of playing in a band.  He thought orchestra was the only good thing in the world. However, he went again in 2018 with joy. He went from narrow minded to being open to possibilities. Rui Yao completed her internal assessments- twice.  The work submitted was not her best.  Sometimes you have to have hard conversations. Pushing students to what they can do best is hard, but worth it. To complete DP, you have to test yourself.  Dig deep.  The program will show you who you really are.


Messages from Parents

Yi Bo Wei (DP2 student) `s Father

Hello everyone, I am Wei Yibo’s father. I am very happy. Wei Yibo graduated from secondary school today. Everyone is studying together, working together and playing together. You have spent a very exciting year together. I believe that these years will leave a very important memory for your life. All the students are very good, so I represent the parents, from the perspective of me and his mother. We thank the school for providing such a good environment and such a good educational condition for the children. I am also very grateful to the teachers for their hard work and bringing the children from an ignorant child to a secondary school graduation,  to university. Thank you very much.

Hee Jung Yang (DP2 student) `s  Mother

Yang has been studying at XLIS for more than five years. I am grateful to the school leaders and staff for their guidance and support for my daughter's learning, so that Yang can grow up in a good education and teaching environment. We feel very gratified and grateful.

Yuan Zhi Ma (DP2 student) `s Father

Hello everyone, I am Ma Yuanzhi`s father, a 2019 graduate. I am especially grateful to the school for the careful design and organization of the graduation ceremony for students. My child Ma Yuanzhi was a DP student here for three years and in addition to knowledge, in fact gained more the mastery of thinking and learning methods, and I hope my children and other graduates can continue to work hard on the road, study and work in the future. The learned knowledge methods and good study habits at Liangjiatan International School were brought to his university life and brought to his later life. Thank you very much.