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The Friday Interview: Helen Farrants

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(Image: Helen won a trip to MIT at the National Swedish Unga Forskare Competition, 2009)

Latest News talks to former student Helen Farrants, who graduated in June, just days before she heads to the UK to start a degree at the University of Edinburgh.

1. What programme did you take?

Helen: I took the Natural Science Programme. When I started IEGS it wasn’t possible to specialise like you can now.

2. So how come you choose to study at IEG?

I wanted my education to be nearly exclusively in English. That only left me with only a couple of schools in Stockholm to choose from. I chose IEGS over the others as I really liked the feel of the school, the small community, the family feeling. Of course, the good reputation of the science program also played a role.

3. What is the Natural Science Programme really like?

Excellent. There is such a diversity of people and opinions at IEG. But it's not easy. There is a lot to learn and a lot of hard work that goes into it. Also, if you try and put some effort into it you can really learn so much.

The support is incredible. Just sitting together with other people in your class to study. The teachers are also always there if you need to ask questions.

Helen (centre) and friends graduate from IEGS

Helen (centre) and friends graduate from IEGS

4. Where are you headed now?

I am heading over to Scotland to study at the University of Edinburgh. I am not quite sure what I am going to study in detail yet, but I know I am going to be taking some chemistry courses to start of with.

5. Do you think IEG prepared you for university? How?

IEG definitely prepared me academically for university. I'm sure that I will be on par with the Scottish students when it comes to academics. I spent the summer in the US with American high school kids, and I felt that I had the same level of knowledge –if not better in certain areas! Of course, university is very different socially from upper secondary education, so this will be a whole new experience for me! I'm very excited.

6. What's your favourite memory of your time at IEG?

Good grief - there is so much! I really just enjoyed the atmosphere around the school – being around talking to people.

The assemblies we had in the old building [in Enskede] were a blast! Seeing the students all around you show their secret talents that you had no idea they had was really cool. Assemblies brought the school together too.

Other events that shook up the everyday schedule such as Gender Day and Language Days could also be fun as you met a lot of people to just have a laugh with.

It's difficult to decide on just one memory; there are a few really fun moments in the classroom…

7. What, if anything, would have made life better during your three years at IEG?

There were a few things that could have made life a bit more fun at IEG. Extracurricular clubs! A running club, say, or a science club or a debate team. That could have been fun.

A better communication system to get info to the students would've been good. But the rumour mill took care of it most of the time!

Jon Ouch! :) I guess that's why we're now on Twitter, Facebook and SchoolSoft, etc, to get info out as easily as possible. We want everyone to know what's going on.

8. Finally, before you go. Where would you like to be in 10 years?

I will still be working in science. I don't know in what way, but as long I get to learn, to be stimulated, to grow and have fun I will be happy.

Jon: Thanks for taking the time to talk to us Helen! Everyone at IEGS wishes you the very best in Scotland. Keep in touch and come back and see us soon !

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