Jiyoon is a senior from South Korea who attends high school in Illinois. She is an A+ student and is involved in many leadership opportunities at school.

Jiyoon’s Local Coordinator, who describes her as very quiet, soft spoken, and extremely ambitious, shares that Jiyoon was chosen for the Leadership Team right away. Everyone on the team was assigned different roles, and one of Jiyoon’s was to be paired with a freshman as a “buddy.” Another was to help coordinate activities for the International Club.

One of Jiyoon’s favorite activities is being a participant and member of the Math Team. She shares:

“At the beginning of the school year, there was an after-school activities fair, and I heard about the Math Team for the first time. I was confident in math, and thought it would be interesting. So, I decided to join the team.”

Before she joined the team, Jiyoon thought math was an independent activity. After her involvement in several group competitions, however, she realized that math can be done cooperatively.

“It is more fun when we can help solve math problems together,” she says. “I had opportunities to improve my thinking, math, and cooperative skills through competitions and practice. Also, I made a lot of new friends!”

Jiyoon recalls:

“One of my favorite memories of the Math Team was going to State last year. The state competition was held at the University of Illinois. It was so exciting just for the fact that I was able to participate. Our Math Team did not place, but it was a great experience and a fun day!”

Beyond having exceptional mathematical abilities, Jiyoon’s host father, Dave, describes her as being very sweet, accommodating, and conscientious.

“Jiyoon has been a delight to have in our house. We’ve helped her learn how to express herself.”

Dave explains that they have taught her tricks about the English language, enjoy playing games such as Rummy Cube together, and have exposed her to a variety of experiences in the Chicago area. Jiyoon recalls a favorite memory of going to a Chicago White Sox baseball game with her host family:

“I am a huge baseball fan and love watching the games. It was a wonderful opportunity for me to be at the White Sox game. I also had a lot of fun with my host family on the way there, and we got a caricature made of us at the game.”

We look forward to celebrating Jiyoon’s high school graduation this year and wish her much success!

Written by Flo Ruiz; Edited by Ann Steffen

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