Yang, Eunmo is an extraordinary student; he took 3 AP tests just after enrolling in our school, was exempted from several
classes because he had covered the contents of class already, took an overall 15 AP tests during his stay at KMLA,
scored 5s in all of them. I advised him against taking so many AP tests, as 5 or 6 suffice to prove that he is good at test
taking, and I advised him to focus on his research paper instead.
About a year ago Eunmo told me that he wanted to write a research paper on the history of Nepal, a country where his
uncle resides, and where he had stayed for a week. I suggested him to write about the modernization of the country.
For a year I had little insight in the progress of the paper; then, a few weeks ago, he began to give me parts of his paper
for review. His final draft covers 115 pages single space, contains 177 notes, a reference list with 23 titles (if serial
publications such as the Britannica Book of the Year are counted as one position), numerous graphs and maps all of
which Yang, Eunmo composed.
Nepal never underwent colonialism nor a revolution; hence traditional structures have not abruptly been terminated, the
process of modernization thus was of a more complex nature than in neighbouring India and China, for example.
In order to write a paper intelligible to a general readership (Eunmo summarized his findings in a presentation in front
of his schoolmates a few weeks ago) he wrote a glossary explaining 107 terms (Yang, Eunmo even gives the spelling in
Nepali); his paper contains several appendices. Despite its length, Yang, Eunmo's research paper still is concise and
Yang, Eunmo's paper relies largely on English language books and periodicals, complementing those with website in
exceptional cases. At a high school he did not have regular access to a research library; he does neither read Nepali
nor Hindi, and I, as his advisor, can not claim to be an expert in the history of Nepal. In all other aspects, such as length
and depth, Yang, Eunmo's paper, is a high school equivalent of a master's thesis.
When we began having students write research papers at KMLA 5 years ago, I did not expect any student to write a
paper of such a scope; Yang Eunmo now holds several records at our school, the student who took most AP tests and
the student who wrote the longest research paper. He achieved all this while giving the impression of being cool,
not pressured by examinations, due dates, finding the time enjoy life, to waste time, which once caused me to think of him as
being lazy - an error of judgment on my side which he now has proven fundamentally wrong.
October 17th 2007