In a world where grades are used as a measure of self worth and academic achievement defines you as a person, school can seem like a daunting task. The idea of going to school in the summer is one that strikes fear in the hearts of many. Still, some scholars choose to continue their academic endeavors into summer, and the Tennessee Governor’s School provides them with the perfect opportunity.
Governor’s School, divided into a series of smaller schools for specific interests, brings together a unique mix of inspired young thinkers.
Joanna Xiao (12) attended the School of Emerging Technologies this summer, and she fondly remembers the time she spent in college laboratories, researching on her own and learning from her teachers.
“[The teachers] trust you. Still, they know you’re still in high school and learning, so they’re there to help you every step of the way,” Xiao said. “If you fail, you pick yourself back up and figure out why that happened and how you can fix it.”
In addition to the extraordinary academics and devoted teachers, students get the chance to interact with like minded peers interested in similar career paths.
“Even though we were very different in a lot of ways,we were all united in this one thing: engineering and emerging technologies,” Xiao said of her experiences with her Gov School peers.
Zhaohan Zho (11), who attended the School for Science and Engineering, is also appreciative of the opportunity he had to meet such an interesting group of people.
“There was this guy that played the didgeridoo! You can really only play one note but he was actually pretty good…” said Zho.
For Xiao, Zho and their peers, this summer was chance to grow, and even though a student can only attend the Governor’s School one time, they have created memories and forged experiences together that will last a lifetime.