Panthers Of ISKL #7 - Wen Li - The Four Year IASAS Athlete
This week we caught up with Grade 12 student Wen Li Y., who was recognized as an outstanding four-year athlete during the recent IASAS Season 2 Sports Awards Night in February this year.
Wen Li, a Malaysian student, is a member of three Varsity teams for Swimming, Cross-Country and Track & Field.
She is also an active alto singer of the HS choir and the lead singer of the "Wen Li and Soup" HS band, playing the guitar and piano in her free time. Wen Li has just found out that she will be attending the prestigious Wellesley College in Boston, USA, this fall and we couldn’t be more proud of her accomplishments!
"'My whole family is into sports. My dad, my mom, my brother and me. I was six years old when I started competitive swimming. My dad participated in SEA Age Group swimming competitions when he was younger and my brother, who is also studying at ISKL - is trying to beat me in the number of IASAS tournaments we are taking part in. There is some competition between us!
‘They all inspire me - especially my dad when I watch him take part in sports and seeing how committed he is to exercise. He is way faster than me, which can be very intimidating - I have a lot of respect for him!
'My mum inspires me too - both my parents work hard yet still have time to wake up early and swim two or three times a week, ever since I was young. My grandfather - he wasn't a sportsperson, but he is proud of my brother and me for being athletes and celebrates our accomplishments.
'I used to swim competitively for the Federal Territory State Team for three years for the NAG (National Age Group) - which is the Malaysian Nationals.
'In HS, I wasn't planning to join the swim team, but I did so in my freshman year - it ended up being so much fun! I think the swim team at ISKL is the best because everyone is so enthusiastic and encouraging. I specialize in long-distance events, so I did the 400m Individual Medley and 800m freestyle, and for backstroke, I did the 100m and 200m this year.
'For sports, at ISKL you need to go for tryouts at the beginning of the year and you either make it into the Junior Varsity or Varsity team. Once you make it into the Varsity team, the coaches will select a few to represent at the IASAS competitions. For cross country, it is 7 people, for track and field they select 15 people and, for swimming, there are 12 spots - it differs for each sport.
'Before my senior year, I would have said cross country and track were more important to me because when I was growing up, I disliked swimming as I felt pressured to do it. Alas, this year I fell in love with swimming again and all the sports are equally important to me.
'Looking back, one of the best decisions I’ve ever chosen for myself was to go and try all these new things - as intimidating as it was.
‘My biggest fear was being in a new ‘High School’ environment - not knowing what is happening or the people around you. I was afraid to try out for the varsity teams. I think overcoming that is the most important thing because once you are actually on the team, you realize that it is not that bad, and you make lots of friends".
What does "Be All You Are" mean to you?
'Be all you are means embracing all the opportunities you can and that has been a big part of High School for me. Even though it can be overwhelming, I would not have had it any other way.
'If I hadn't done all the things I wanted to do, I don't think I would be the same person that I am today."