Name: Araddhya
Graduation Year: 2024
Middle School: Marin Country Day
Hometown: San Francisco
What advice would you give to 8th graders applying to high school? Look for a place where your values are aligned because that is the place you will belong. Learn to drain out the noise, tune into the voice of your instinct, and make decisions from the heart. Most importantly, be fearless in expressing yourself.
Why did you choose College Prep? I found College Prep to be the place where I could do hard things—and do them happily. On the rainy day I visited, freshmen were pushing each other on carts in the parking lot to investigate the laws of friction. Outside, in the rain. I knew right then and there that College Prep was my home. I saw a perfect blend of happiness and rigor. Look for such moments of resonance on your high school visits. They're really powerful—and accurate. 
What is your best College Prep memory? My favorite memory is standing atop a wooden Harkness table in class barefooted, performing a soliloquy from Macbeth. Although very unusual for me, I assure you it was but an average day for our veteran English teacher. He wanted to replicate the experience of watching an actor perform inside the Globe Theatre in London almost 400 years ago, when the lowest stood in the "pit" and gazed upwards at the stage. I've never laughed so hard.
Campus Involvement: At CPS, I'm the leader of the Math Club, where we investigate fun concepts like packing density. We ask, what's the most efficient way to pack a bunch of oranges? It's a life-and-death question, trust me. I'm also involved in acting, participating in a few productions (come, see one!). The theater community is incredibly close—spending all those hours rehearsing together brings out the best and the worst of you. CPS is also the place I developed a passion for public speaking through competitive speech. I've learned how to use language dynamically, exploit it, respect it, and most importantly appreciate its power in persuasion. I have grown in surprising and memorable ways.
What has been your favorite class so far (and why)? Ms. Gumbert didn't just teach us events that transpired some centuries ago in our Asian Worlds class, but allowed us the intellectual freedom to inhabit the mind of that politician. Suddenly, we began to practice decision making, given an agenda, ideology, and set of resources. We began to predict history. It was a powerful way of looking at the rise and demise of countries—and the legacy left behind.
What is your favorite thing about College Prep? The teachers are the heart of College Prep. They really do care about you—not just your performance in class—but your entire well-being and personality. Teachers here help you learn the ways of the world—kindness, gratitude, and passion—thus forever changing you.
What is your favorite character from a movie/book/television series? Benedict Cumberbatch plays the real life Alan Turing in The Imitation Game. The entire process of developing the Enigma machine during World War 2 is represented beautifully.
Three unusual things about you:
1. I've paraglided over the Alps.
2. I can square numbers faster than a calculator. 
3. I lived in India for 11 years.