SJI International Trumps In 2016 World’s Scholar Cup

This year, a team of 19 students from SJI International found themselves on top of the world as they tested their mettle in one of the world’s most prestigious academic tournaments.

Sweeping an impressive number of awards in the Top 20 across almost every category, the school’s crowning achievement lies in its Junior Team comprising Kyle Lim, Alessandra Lim, and Tara Kripalani, who placed first overall in the tournament’s Junior Division - out of more than 400 teams.

The team’s outstanding dynamics even scored them the 17th position in Debate and 4th in Writing. Alessandra Lim, Grade 9, wrapped up the win by placing as second runner-up for the World Champion Scholar title out of more than 1000 Junior Individuals.  


"We know that other schools in Singapore and around the world often hire external coaches to ‘drill’ students in preparation for this competition. At SJI International however, our students worked independently to organise and lead their own sessions throughout the year, which makes their success in the competition that much more significant. We have been so impressed with their perseverance and maturity, even if we did have to lock their notes in a safe before they would sleep!"

- Mr Ronak Punjabi and Ms Nicola Berge


SJI International’s Senior Team also pulled a solid effort in the competition, with 8 out of 13 students finishing in the Top 100 – a spectacular feat considering the calibre of world students involved.

Every year, the World Scholar’s Cup regional competitions take place in more than 40 countries around the world, culminating in a Global Round in June and followed by the Tournament of Champions finals held at Yale University in November. This year’s intake has proven to be the most intense by far, with more than 3500 talented students involved.

But while this prestigious annual tournament may look like a competition at first glance, but it isn’t really at all.

Created as a platform for a global community of future scholars and leaders to come together and discuss issues and ideas relevant to today and the future, the World Scholar’s Cup stands out from traditional academic competitions and conferences in that it motivates students to not just demonstrate existing strengths, but to discover new skills as well.

This year, the central theme was ‘An Imperfect World’, and teams were challenged to learn and think over a plethora of subjects including Science, History, Literature, Arts, and Social Studies. Students debated, submitted persuasive writing pieces, and solved general knowledge and analytic questions in a trivia challenge; putting to test their skills for public speaking, critical thinking, teamwork, reading comprehension, and knowledge retention as a team.

In short? The World Scholar’s Cup celebrates collaborative learning, not competitive studying.



"Despite the tense atmosphere, the World Scholar's’ Cup rounds have always provided us with different ways to apply our knowledge gathered from the past year through debate, writing and traditional examination formats whilst allowing us to interact and bond with scholars from all over the world.

The World Scholar's Cup provides a rewarding learning experience which deviates from memory-based learning as scholars are challenged to use their knowledge gained to solve problems related to current events and the world. It also allows students to interact with scholars of other cultures and we would definitely recommend the programme to students who want to further themselves in their learning."
- Sean Lim and Marcus Ang


Here are the Top 20 event highlights:

  • World Champion Team (Junior): Kyle Lim, Alessandra Lim, and Tara Kripalani, 1st
  • World Champion Scholar (Junior): Alessandra Lim, 3rd
  • Scholar’s Bowl (Junior): Kyle Lim, Alessandra Lim, and Tara Kripalani, 2nd 
  • Arts (Senior Individuals) : Bryan Defjan, 1st  
  • Debate (Junior Team): Kyle Lim, Alessandra Lim, and Tara Kripalani, 17th
  • History (Junior Individuals): Tara Kripalani, 1st | Sean Lim, 9th
  • Literature (Junior Individuals): Tara Kripalani, 15th
  • Literature (Senior Individuals): Amy Zhang, 2nd | Russell Yap, 4th
  • Science (Junior Individuals): Alessandra Lim, 19th
  • Social Studies (Junior Individuals): Alessandra Lim, 6th
  • Writing (Junior Individuals): Alessandra Lim, 3rd
  • Writing (Junior Team):
    Kyle Lim, Alessandra Lim, and Tara Kripalani, 4th
    Marcus Ang, Sean Lim, Sara-Grace Lien, 9th
  • Writing (Senior Team):
    Phoebe Chua, Hian Leng Kek, Ryan Tze Hung Liong, 10th
    Marcus Ng, Nicolette Wong, Bryan Defjan, 17th
  • All Subjects (Junior Individuals): Alessandra Lim, 6th | Tara Kripalani, 15th
  • Special Area (Junior Individuals): Alessandra Lim, 11th


  • SJI International, 490 Thomson Road, Singapore 298191
  • High School (all enquiries): (+65) 6353 9383
  • Elementary School Admissions: (+65) 6871 5261
  • Elementary School: (+65) 6871 5202