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SHSID Wins First Place in USAD China! Congratulations!

April, 2018
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In the period between 26 to 28 February, four teams and five individuals in Shanghai High School International Division (SHSID) participated in the United States Academic Decathlon China (USAD) Finals in Guangzhou. This year, a team from SHSID, led by Conrad Chan of Class 12 (1), captured first place with a record score of 46,000, which is 2,000 more points than the previous record. In total, SHSID attained an exceptional achievement of acquiring 13 gold, 18 silver, and 21 bronze medals, bringing back the highest number of medals in the school’s history in the USAD competition.

shsid-news-photoUSAD is an annual competition that consists of seven academic subject tests, an interview, an essay, and a speech event, which all revolved around the 2018 theme of Africa. A team is formed by students from three divisions: Honors, Scholastic, and Varsity. While the ten events are individual-based, the Super Quiz event involves two to three participants from each division answering multiple choice questions that contain a mixture of problems encompassing the seven subjects. The top twenty teams selected from the 208 teams in the China Finals are promoted and travel to the state of Texas in April to participate in the US Final Round.

During an interview with News Group, members of the SHSID USAD China champion team – Archie Jiang from Class 11 (1) and Koki Ajiri from Class 12 (3) – shared their experiences of their respective involvement in the competition. Both interviewees have participated in USAD for three consecutive years. When questioned about advice that may be helpful to other teams, Koki responded that teams should have “an immense team spirit” and make their team members feel important and involved in the competition. Indeed, USAD places importance on team collaboration since team members need to assist each other during their long period of preparation. Their team, for instance, also emphasized mutual support by holding extra individual sessions to aid teammates who were especially weak in certain subjects. They also solved arguments in the team though a voting system.

Koki mentioned that he is the founder of the USAD China Scrimmage, a mock event that simulates the actual Decathlon competition. He commented that he was motivated to create the event because it allows students to “understand where their strengths and weaknesses are.”

The interview with the two participants shows that the contest is a memorable experience for all decathletes. It also helps to expand students’ perspectives in a variety of fields. Hopefully, the team can achieve more valuable experiences and accomplishments in the US Finals.


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