Advice from alumni: Addison (Addie) Nix
Addison Nix, also known as “Addie,” is an American alum from our EF Academy New York campus, class of 2014. She is currently studying at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service since she has always been interested in diplomacy and international relations. Learn more about our featured alum:
Why did you choose to go to EF Academy?
I lived 1.5 hour away from the EF Academy campus and my stepmother would drive past the school on her way to work. When I had the chance to go to EF Academy, I thought that I should definitely go because I knew it would be a unique opportunity to live with people from all over the world and practice new languages. I also knew that I wanted to do the International Baccalaureate (IB) program because I wanted to apply for universities both in the UK and U.S. Being American and studying at an international boarding school definitely helped set me apart when it came to university applications – I was even invited for an interview at Cambridge.
What university did you go to afterwards? What did you study and why?
After EF Academy, I started at New York University (NYU) and I studied International Relations and Political Science because I have always been very interested in this field. I even got to go Europe and study as an exchange student in France. I liked this experience a lot because I met a lot of new people and got to visit my friends from EF Academy in Europe.
I liked New York, but after a while, I felt it was a bit too urban. That is why I decided to transfer to Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service; initially, the idea was just to see what would happen but I ended up loving it here. I really like the classes and I enjoy the fact that it has its own campus.
What do you want to do next?
I would like to work for the State Department with Foreign Service, since I have always been interested in diplomacy and relations. I find the lifestyle of moving to a new country every two years to be very exciting.
Tips to current students that want to study what you study?
If you really love politics, make sure to educate yourself by staying up-to-date on current events and find relevant experiences; like internships. It is all about having passion!
Do you keep in touch with your EF Academy classmates?
I do keep in contact with a lot of people, some more frequently than others but it is never weird if someone contacts me randomly. For example, just the other day, my friend from Norway, who was a senior when I was a junior, sent me a message asking what Americans thought of presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.
What’s your favorite memory from EF Academy?
When I participated in the Hult Prize competition! I did it during my junior year and it was really a turning point for me. My whole life, I was introverted and did not really like working in groups. However, I wanted to participate in the Hult Prize competition and that entailed working in groups of five people from different parts of the world. Since people had so many unique perspectives, it became a true learning experience and I am sure that I would have never come up with as good of a solution alone. To be fair, it was a lot of work and we spent many late nights and even ordered pizza at 1 a.m., but it was fun because we had a joint goal and we all really put in a lot of effort into achieving that goal. We really bonded during that experience and I still keep in touch with some of them; one group member even became my roommate for my senior year.
What do you miss the most?
I miss the friends that I made there. It was a very close and intimate environment, which is different from university where the teachers don’t always know your name. At EF Academy, even the Headmaster knew my name. I also miss being so close to New York City.
What is one thing that you learned from EF Academy that you found valuable for university? For work life? For your personal life?
For me, I think that the biggest thing was how well the IB curriculum, especially the Extended Essay, really prepared me for university studies. I still rely on those skills today. I did Advanced Placement – the American equivalent of the IB program – in my previous school, it was more about memorizing, whereas IB really focuses on actual learning and making connections. I also had more exposure to standardized tests. The only standardized test that we have in the American system is the SAT.
What tips would you give to current students?
It can be tough sometimes, but just know that it will all be worth it in the end.
Make the most of your time and your friendships at school – these will be the people that you will miss the most. Relish the unique opportunity of being at EF Academy.
Name: Addison “Addie” Nix
How many languages do you speak? English and French
EF Academy campus: New York
Graduation years: 2014
Residence or host family: Residence
Favorite subject: I really liked English Literature because of our amazing teacher, Sara Walsh. She was always on campus and helped a lot. This was by far my favorite English class.
Favorite teacher: Sara Walsh – Really loved the way she taught, which made the classes very interesting. Most importantly she cared a lot and would stop anything to help us.
Favorite club/society: Student council or Model UN
Student council: I was the treasurer and I made a lot of friends there. Compared to my old school, the student council at EF Academy had a lot of say which was amazing. Just the fact that we had a budget was great!
Model UN: Daniel Wood and I revived the Model UN club during our senior year. It was great fun as we got to travel to different, fun conferences across the country.
Which is the next country you want to visit?
Israel – I am taking a class in Judaism and also learning Hebrew.
Who to interview next:
Danny Wood – An American who is now at Harvard.
Stefanie Arnold – My roommate from Sudtirol in Italy, who is currently studying Law in Bologna. She is amazing and one of the smartest people I know.
Shouts outs to:
Marilie Jonas – a guidance counselor who was previously a dean at MIT. She was great and so supportive. She had so much experience and was great when recommending where to apply; she even contacted a few admission offices for me.
Brian Mahoney – Really great as well
Jason Kirschner and Lauren Utnick – Really nice to have the country admission managers close on campus and I would spend hours at their office. We started the Storm guides my year and it was really fun!