With the interruptions that the Coronavirus pandemic has made to the typical school schedule, activities and academics have changed drastically. The manner in which students must complete their CAS projects this year is no exception.
The International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma program requires students to take higher-level classes, complete a research project and participate in community service hours, along with their own unique “Creativity, Activity, Service,” or CAS, projects.
Rizelle Mae Mazon, a senior in the IB diploma program, reflected on the way that COVID-19 affected the completion of her CAS project.
“It was weird because we have all this time to do it, but at the same time, it feels like we’re missing all the direction and support…,” she said.
She and her partner, Kayden Masters, decided to make color guard tutorial videos together for their project.
“I was so excited for it before quarantine,” said Mae Mazon, “but it’s weird doing color guard without the whole team… For me personally, having everyone together was really what pushed me to keep trying and improving myself.”
Other students, like Dharshini Sridharan, Preethi Mohan and Jalyssa Mancias had the ability to complete their projects over the summer.
“For my CAS project I did a BLM shirts project with my friends where we made shirts and donated all of the money to the movement,” said Sridharan.
“I guess you could say it was kind of nice to do it over the summer and we had a lot of time to work on it. It was easier especially because we didn’t have to do school work along with it,” she added.
And Natasha Rodriguez, another IB diploma candidate, was able to develop her CAS project off of the needs created by the pandemic.
“My CAS project was a food drive we ran for people who were affected by the pandemic,” she said. “I did it through Mock Trial with some other IB members because we thought we could reach more people that way.”
Although the pandemic opened up new opportunities for IB students completing their CAS projects, they also faced new difficulties, including avoiding the spread of the virus.
“Completing our project during a pandemic was kind of scary because we were near a large group of people, but we managed to push through,” said Rodriguez.