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International CWS finishes with eye-opening IBL competition

The 2019 International CWS Thought Series winners pose with shirts declaring them such
Posted: June 19, 2019 at 12:52 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)

The first-ever International CWS at the University of South Florida concluded on Sunday with its participants inspired by the introduction to inquiry-based learning they experienced as a highlight of their five days together.

After a competitive college competition won by a team of mostly Texans representing George Washington University, new teams formed for the Thought Series half of the International CWS program. The CWS, as NHI’s capstone program, presents students with inquiry-based learning to make it a program that extends well beyond college. Students from the winning team of mostly Midwesterners — though they mastered IBL concepts well enough to triumph — admitted some difficulty with it at first.

I’m not going to lie, I hated the IBL process at first,” admitted Carina Martinez of Lincoln College Preparatory Academy, Kansas City, Missouri. “In the beginning, I couldn’t understand anything, but as time went on, we worked as a team to gain a better understanding of how IBL works. Feeling the satisfaction of knowing that we did understand and could apply the skills to any prompt given was amazing.”

“I feel like all the confusion and frustration was worth the satisfaction of actually understanding the IBL process,” added Angelina Godinez of Lyons Township High School in La Grange, Illinois. She credited her teammates for helping her, noting, “We did a good job of holding each other accountable so it really helped us progress and complete the challenge. NHI gave us a new way to approach a challenge.”

“IBL was an insane rollercoaster ride,” quipped Arian De La Torre from Argo Community High School, Summit, Illinois. “Unlike the ones at Busch Gardens, however, it was one that I was much more willing to go on and endure.

The winning team members included:

Miguel Alvarez, Round Lake High School, Round Lake, Illinois

Andrea Ballard, Colegio Real, Panamá, Panamá

Marleny Barrera, Palatine High School, Palatine, Illinois

Arian De La Torre, Argo Community High School, Summit, Illinois 

Angelina Godinez, Lyons Township High School, La Grange, Illinois

Maria Drobny, Lyons Township High School, La Grange, Illinois

Brad Gutierrez, Lennard High School, Ruskin, Florida

Kimberly Larin, Margaret Long Wisdom High School, Houston, Texas

Carina Martinez, Lincoln College Preparatory Academy, Kansas City, Missouri

Carlos Sarmiento, Saint Joseph Academy, Brownsville, Texas

Luis Jauregui, one of the International CWS coaches hailing from the Midwest, was impressed by what he saw from all the students throughout the week.

“This year’s group of kids will forever have a special place in my heart,” he noted. “I have seen them through the Great Debate, LDZ, Celebracion, and now the CWS, so I’ve been blessed to see them go through the entire process. I am thankful for having the opportunity to grow myself alongside such a wonderful group of kids. Watching them in the finals after having met them when they were quiet and shy back in their Great Debate proved to me that all their hard work these past couple of years was worth it. They aren’t the same group of kids they were coming into the program. These kids are the future of the National Hispanic Institute and I cannot wait to see what else they accomplish with the organization and in their near future.”

The International CWS is presented in part by State Farm. 

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