By ANGELA XU
Hardworking, adventurous, bright and ambitious. The traits a model student should have, senior Nyah Zhang has them all.
Not only is she the president of the Make-A-Wish club, Zhang is also the co-president of FBLA, co-captain of Mock Trial and a member of Wilson’s water polo team.
According to Zhang, she first started to join different activities in her freshman year out of pure curiosity.
“To be honest, when I was picking clubs and [extracurricular activities] freshman year, I did not put much thought into it,” Zhang said. “I just joined what I thought I would like and some of them were rather spontaneous decisions.”
Moreover, Zhang lays emphasis on experimenting with different activities throughout her high school experience.
“I think [passion] is something I have been trying to explore throughout my years in high school and will continue to explore in college,” Zhang said. “It is okay to not have something in particular that you are passionate about, and it took me a long time to accept and recognize that.”
Zhang also decided to jumpstart the Make-A-Wish organization club on campus with her friend, senior Edmund Chu.
“I was really looking forward to something I could do for our campus. As a result, I did some research and settled on starting this club.”
Furthermore, Zhang also believes that joining clubs like FBLA and Mock Trial have greatly ameliorated her public speaking skills and expanded her knowledge about law and business despite not planning to major in any of these fields.
“Those two clubs really helped improve different soft skills, as well as increase my knowledge on certain topics even though I might not need it in the future,” Zhang said. “Not to mention, I had a lot of fun with my fellow team members.”
Additionally, Zhang was happy to be able to join water polo as she met many new people who are now some of her closest friends.
“Through water polo I was also able to meet some other students I was never familiar with and I made some everlasting memories with them throughout the years.”
In addition, Zhang also took part in a clinical summer internship at Stanford and was able to learn from medical professionals.
“My summer internship was virtual and it was quite an experience. I learned a lot about the paths that were available to me and heard from a lot of professionals about their journeys and their current research,” Zhang said. “I also met a lot of new people that were interested in the same things that I was. [Overall], it was a great learning experience”
Moreover, while expanding her interests even further, Zhang was also capable of placing in competitions.
“I have placed multiple times [in different sections] during FBLA competitions,” Zhang said. “Freshman year, I placed ninth for Introduction to Business and fifth for Management Decision Making. Sophomore year I placed second for Broadcast Journalism. Junior year I placed fourth in Public Speaking and first in Impromptu Speaking. Lastly, senior year I placed seventh for Public Speaking and third for International Business.”
Zhang believes that the other activities she joined aided her greatly throughout her high school experience.
“I have never been too sociable or extroverted, so I think my extracurricular activities really helped me get out of my comfort zone and pushed me to be better,” Zhang said. “There are a lot of things I do not enjoy doing in particular, but I have really been able to challenge myself by pursuing them anyway. I have also learned how to communicate more easily with other people.”
Zhang also advises younger students to give everything a try during their high school life since they would never know if they would truly like it.
“My biggest advice for students is to just give everything a shot before you decide it is not for you. However, it is fine if it is not for you. Do not try to force yourself into liking something when you clearly do not like it.”
Along Zhang’s high school journey, she discovered that what helped her most, even with overloads of school work, would be her talent in doing multiple things at once.
“I think being able to multitask and work efficiently really helped me [throughout high school],” Zhang said. “It is hard to stay focused during long periods of time, so I usually prefer to work for shorter times.”
Furthermore, despite Zhang being a huge procrastinator, she finds balance between schoolwork and activities by knowing her limits and de-stressing with different sources of entertainment.
“I am a huge procrastinator and tend to wait until the last minute to do things. But overall, I think it is important to know what your limit is and nothing is more important than your mental health,” Zhang said. “[Generally speaking], my source of relaxation would probably be watching television shows, listening to music and hanging out with friends and family.”
Additionally, Zhang talks about who inspires her the most throughout her life.
“My mom is a really big inspiration of mine. [Although] she is a little mean, I really admire her work ethic and persistence,” Zhang said.
In the future, Zhang hopes to attend college and to pursue a career in the medical field.
“Hopefully, I commit to a school I want to go to, and I plan to continue onto the pre-medical track and go to medical school later on,” Zhang said.
Evidently, with her adventurous mindset, effective communication skills and multitasking expertise, Nyah Zhang was born for greatness and success.