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45 out of 45 points: Interview with our 2020 graduate Phillip Mondrup

Where were you when you found out that you had been awarded 45 points?
"I was at Garderkasernen Høvelte, home of the Royal Guard, where I am currently doing my military service. We aren’t allowed to have our phones on us when we’re on duty, so I’d been walking around the entire day with absolutely no idea of what was happening in the IB world. When we were dismissed and I went to my quarters and looked at my phone, I had a message from my mother telling me to check my email. I did so, and saw an email from Ms. Donnellan titled ‘Some wonderful news…..’. It was a screenshot of my results page, and that’s how I found out."

How did you feel?
"It’s hard to put those feelings into words, but definitely elated and content. I originally got 44 points, and I’d resigned myself to the fact that it would stay that way, so it was a massive surprise to see that my grades had suddenly changed. My family sent me a congratulatory video, and that made it feel more real because until then I’d just been alone, looking at the results screenshot from my email. I actually told the guy I share a bunk bed with what’d happened even though he had no idea what I was talking about. He just smiled and said congratulations."

Tell us about yourself
"I am from Denmark. My family consists of myself, my parents, and my younger sister and brother. When I was 6, we moved to Düsseldorf, Germany where I attended an international school. In 2013, we moved to Geneva, Switzerland and I went to an international school. A few years later we moved back to Denmark and my siblings and I went to Rygaard’s. Then I came to CIS in Grade 11 and graduated in the Class of 2020."

Have you changed during your time here at Copenhagen International School?
"I’ve matured a lot, both on a personal and an academic level. I feel that I’ve improved my work ethic and really figured out the balance between work and free time. I know what works best for me when it comes to getting work done and avoiding procrastination. The IB Diploma is a lot of work, but it’s worth it and I would definitely recommend it. As an IB student you learn to manage your time effectively and to stay organized, as well as how to study and think critically. It’s also a great investment for your future, both in terms of getting accepted into university and getting experience with research projects and writing papers."

What are your plans for the future?
"There’s a parade at Rosenborg Castle once the guards near the end of their service, where the Queen of Denmark presents a watch to the best guard of that team. There are about 400 soldiers per team, and the recipient of the Queen’s Watch is chosen by his or her peers, for being a good soldier and companion to others. It would be an honor to receive this. I will finish my military service in April 2021 and start university in Autumn 2021, either at Imperial College London or DTU because I already have a place with both universities. As to what happens after that, I can’t say because I don’t even know myself."