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WISS graduate gives heartwarming speech

by Rasmus Knudsen, WISS Shanghai of  The Western International School of Shanghai

Youngster set for medical school

WISS graduate gives heartwarming speech

Rasmus, a Grade 12 student at the Western International School Shanghai, gave a heartfelt speech at his graduation ceremony about how he was able to achieve success in his Diploma Programme with the support of others. He now has the opportunity to study medicine, and fulfill his life-long dream of becoming a doctor.

Two years ago, I was on a very different path compared to where I am today. My grades were not adequate to pass the Diploma Programme and my ignorant lifestyle choices were beginning to have consequences on my health; I guess you could say that I was on the wrong track.


Becoming a doctor had been my life long goal. Ever since I could remember, I have told everyone that I would not be a fireman, an astronaut, or a pilot – but a doctor. I have always been able to close my eyes and dream about how I one day would be able to relieve someone from pain and help those who could not help themselves.

It was 2 years ago that the dream was beginning to take shape as a dream that might never be realized.

One day, in the beginning of my first year in the Diploma Programme, my teachers and parents summoned me into Mrs. Tucker’s office for a meeting. I was told very bluntly, that I was not even close to meeting the requirements for medical school – and nothing indicated that I ever would – unless I changed radically.

As you can tell, the meeting was not one of those pleasant ones where you leave feeling uplifted and content with yourself. But the one big thing I realized during this meeting was that I was surrounded by people who cared, who wanted to support me – and who actually loved me despite of everything I was.

Mr. Kline was one of the people in the room that day. He knew from my first day at WISS that I wanted to become a doctor. He had often talked to me about various British and American medical schools that I could attend – and he had always tried to motivate and encourage me to pursue my dream.

After the meeting I decided that I was not going to let my lack of effort and motivation get in the way of my dream. With the help from many here tonight I started to embark on a new journey. I started to devote myself. I worked harder than ever. I changed my track. And so gradually my grades began to reflect my hard work and my health improved tremendously. And it was in the Christmas of 2015 where I saw that my dream had now become a reality.

It is important to remember that life doesn’t always introduce you to people you want to meet. Sometimes life puts you in touch with the people you need to meet – to help you, to strengthen you, to love you and to gradually push you to pursue your dream and to become the person you were meant to be. Thank you, Mr. Kline, for being who you are. And thank you for everything you did for me.

I promise those of you who supported me that the belief and encouragement that you have all showed me will not be overlooked.

Thank you for the love and support I received from my parents, relatives, classmates, teachers and friends. I couldn’t have done it without you. You believed in me and inspired me to believe in myself even when I had little reason to.

Thank You!