Mariposa Brant is excited to be directing her first 5k/10k in the city of Chicago. With more than 500 expected participants and hundreds of additional spectators, the fundraiser and post-race festival promise to be spectacular! “If you will be in the Chicagoland area on May 18, 2014, consider showing your support by running the race. Not a runner? Not a problem! Visit OPSEF. com for sponsorship and advertising opportunities,” she said.
Andrea Nott is engaged. Please see the Celebrations section for details!
Anjali Vaidya wrote an article for the Huffington Post’s Business blog titled, “The Demise of Sisterhood: Female Friendship in the Workplace.” The piece was about the trade-offs women make to reach the top of their fields, the worst among them being the loss of female friendships in the workplace. “I had previously contributed an article to the Huffington Post and then they invited me to be a regular contributor!” she said.
Liat Noten spent September in France. During her first three weeks there, she volunteered to restore an old country house. She got to sample the local cognac, pineau (sweet wine fortified with cognac) and sunflower honey, and practiced her French with the locals. During her last week, she indulged her love of Gothic architecture and took a trip to visit the famous 900-year-old Gothic cathedrals in Chartres and Bourges. She reported that it was exciting to personally see the cathedrals that she had first studied in her AP Art History class at Harker.
Nandini Datta reports that she just started graduate school at Duke University, where she is getting her Ph.D. in clinical psychology, specializing in the “neural correlates and endophenotypes” of eating disorders.
Nirav Chitkara will soon be working as a consultant at Pricewaterhouse Coopers in San Jose, as well as graduating with his master’s from Santa Clara University in December.
Katherin Hudkins is now in her fourth year of supporting new families at Isis Parenting, where she is the assistant center manager of the Needham parenting center. She also teaches classes for new parents. When not helping people parent, she enjoys hanging out and cooking at home in Jamaica Plain, Boston, with her adopted stray cat, Abbie.
Amira Valliani (along with David Kastelman ’09; see his separate class note for more information on his work in D.C.) spoke about her college (Yale University) and work experiences with a contingent of Harker’s grade 8 students who were visiting Washington, D.C., for their middle school class trip. Amira is the senior advisor to the deputy national security advisor for strategic communications at the White House.
Lauren Harries is engaged. Please see the Celebrations section for details!
Amanda Polzin, Casey Blair, Casey near, Lauren Gutstein, Mariah Bush and Shivani Bhargava went on a whirlwind reunion trip to Vancouver in August, where they gallivanted around the city and ate as much as possible.
Tanya Schmidt is having a great time living in Europe where she is playing professional volleyball. She is playing for Volleyball Club Offenburg in southwest Germany, and invites everyone to follow her blog where she is sharing stories of her time abroad. Check it out at: http://tanyakschmidt.wordpress.com/.
David Kastelman (along with Amira valliani ’06; see her separate class note for more information on her work in D.C.) spoke about his college (Yale University) and work experiences with a contingent of Harker’s grade 8 students who were visiting Washington, D.C., for their middle school class trip. David works at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, an independent federal agency in Washington, D.C.
Benjamin Tien, a chemical and biological engineering major at Princeton University, provided an update on his work with the organization Engineers Without Borders. “I’m currently the technical team leader for the Peru team, and I traveled to Peru last summer to implement a water system for the people of La Pitajaya, a small village. It was very rewarding to see how our engineering calculations directly led to access to clean water for the Pitajayans, and the trip impacted me so much that I am strongly considering international development as a career. We will be returning this summer to build another water system for the other half of the village, and hopefully we will complete the entire project,” he said.
Nidhi Gandhi was the curator of an exhibit called “Resonant Minds: Abstraction and Perception” at the Pomona College Museum of Art, where she worked as a Benton Summer Undergraduate Research Program research assistant last summer. The artworks she selected included lithography, paintings, woodcuts, computer prints and photograms. All of the pieces utilized illusion, shadow and light, color sensitivity and more, demonstrating ways in which our minds process perceptions biologically, psychologically and evolutionarily.
Isaac Madan has co- founded a VC-funded startup called Chalky, an online mentorship platform for advice seekers looking to connect with people who’ve been in their shoes. “Currently, it’s for high school students to connect with college students and alumni to help them apply to colleges successfully,” explained Madan. He is also on Stanford’s varsity fencing team.
Akshay Jagadeesh (along with Pranav Sharma ’13) helped coach Harker’s Public Forum (PF) debate team, which kicked off November by winning the overall team sweepstakes award and taking home the tournament championship at the Minneapple Debate Tournament, held Nov. 1-2 at Apple Valley High School in Minnesota.
Drew Goldstein and Matt Giammona are both recent alums who have been named as basketball managers at their respective North Carolina colleges. Drew, a three-sport athlete at Harker all four years (including basketball), is the basketball manager at Duke University. Matt, who served as Harker’s varsity basketball manager last year, is at Wake Forest University. At Duke, Drew said, “I’m beyond lucky to be a part of it. Of course, I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for learning the important role that our managers played,” said Drew. “Harker prepared me for basketball, and college in general.”
Izzy Connell is enjoying her time at Pepperdine University, running cross country and getting ready for track and field. In her bio, she says, “The reason I came to Pepperdine is for the academics, the athletics and the views!” Meanwhile, Sumit Minocha began his track workouts at Stanford (where he loves going to school). He met with a strength coach to build up and after one month the coach was amazed that he had not gained a pound!
Andy Perez will represent his college, the University of California, Santa Barbara, at the 2013 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) men’s soccer tournament, to be held this winter. Andy is an alumnus of The San Jose Earthquakes Academy, who featured the fact that he will be playing in the tournament in their recent newsletter. Good luck, Andy!
In November, Neeraj Baid became Boy Scout Troop 264’s 80th Eagle Scout, earning the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America, as decided by his Eagle Board of Review. Requirements included earning at least 21 skill-based merit badges and demonstrating scout spirit through the Boy Scout Oath and law, service and leadership. For Neeraj, getting to the Eagle rank has been “a journey from kindergarten to college freshman year, doing a multitude of community service projects, troop leadership roles, fun trips and skill-based badges.” Neeraj’s primary Eagle project was dedicated to helping the San Jose Family Supportive Housing relocate to a new facility. He led a project to build a bookshelf for their library and two large display boards for showcasing housing and job opportunities for resident families. Neeraj worked all summer to earn enough money to self-fund this project.