"My experience at Morgan Park Academy was truly a blessing. It's such a diverse school that I'm very lucky to be exposed to many different cultures. I've started several friendships, which I will cherish for the rest of my life. And I'm eternally grateful to all the teachers who have provided me with help and incredible amount of patience. I remember in my sophomore year that Mr. Smith, my first English teacher, was always passionate to help me with my problems on the subject of English grammar and literature. At MPA, I was a member of soccer team for my whole three years there. Academically, I was also a member of WYSE team for three years and I was luckily placed several times in regional and sectional contests for Chemistry and Math. I was also very lucky to be given the opportunity to organizing the Lunar New Year.
Assembly, an annual tradition in MPA following the arrival of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean exchange students. Cornerstone has also helped me in various ways tremendously. They found me a host family, while the Kelly family weclomed me into their family as their own son. In terms of academics, when I first started school at MPA, writing essays in English was probably the greatest obstacle. To improve my skills, Cornerstone devised a weekly special program focusing on expressing idea in a sophisticated but efficient way. Moreover, Cornerstone constantly keeps track on my academic performances and communicates with my teacher and provides me with advice on how to better. besides helping on my academics, Cornerstone also offers me extensive care regarding my daily life in school as well as outside of school."
Leo Luo Morgan Park Academy 2018
"Morgan Park Academy is a renowned academy with half a century's history. Its campus is decisively different than the schools back home in China. One could say I am fortunate enough to be able to study here. Morgan Park's educational philosophy is to nurture "global leaders and independent thinkers." Its education system is therefore more biased towards encouraging self-learning and the teachers are the guides. Unsurprisingly this philosophy has therefore fostered many innovative and successful people. I see many differences between this academy and the high schools in China. In an example, if I were to equate learning to eating, the Chinese schools would represent a teacher who feeds us while MPA would represent a teacher who teaches us how to use chopsticks to eat. There may be parents who question whether having too much independence can cause disciplinary problems but I believe the answer is no. Even though MPA encourages independent thinking, they have strict and solid discipline and I have personally experienced it. I believe this is the true difference between Chinese and American culture. Don't ever have a Chinese mindset when studying in America."
Grace Lei Morgan Park Academy 2018
“It’s been a few years since I’ve come to America. Even though it was such a short period, my experience at Cornerstone and MPA has turned my life upside down. I had to relearn study habits, and in the process of learning many things, I experienced many others. Studying in America is not exactly easy. At MPA, I partook in many interesting courses I had never taken before. Classes were active and encouraged each student to participate and communicate with one another. You can’t just “do homework” either, because often times, it requires our creative and thorough understanding and ability to apply our own knowledge. Life at Cornerstone has been colorful. Living, playing and studying together with other students is an experience an only-child usually never gets to experience. Writing training, keeping up with current events, and Cornerstone’s monthly activities have allowed us to quickly adapt to America and understand American culture.”
De La Salle Institute
Rico is one of our founding members of the Cornerstone family. She joined us during her sophomore year and we were very happy to have her help us pave the road for future students. Through her, Cornerstone learned and improved its services. Always self-motivated with a passion for electrical engineering, she quickly rose to the top of her graduating class at De La Salle Institute. During her time here, she participated in local and national competitions with the school, passed her TOEFL and ACTs with stellar scores—earning full 36 points on ACT Math and Science sections and a composite score of 34—and even started her own mini-business fixing electronic devices for other students. She also made it into the school’s Girls Basketball Varsity team and worked as an intern and tutor at Cornerstone, helping Cornerstone Mom with paperwork and other struggling students with their studies, TOEFL and ACT preparation. Rico was a wonderful teacher as well, helping Cornerstone host monthly classes to help students develop better study skills and prepare for TOEFL. We’re extremely grateful for the opportunity to work with her and are looking forward to her success in the future!
Rico said, “I transferred from China during my sophomore year. The last three years have meant a lot to me. I have better English skills now and I have made a lot of friends. I used to be very shy, especially in a foreign country. Now, I feel more comfortable and confident talking to others. De La Salle really helped me live in a different country and learn the local culture. Moreover, I feel well prepared for college.”