Armita Jamshidi (CA ’21) was born a first-generation American after her parents immigrated from Iran. Through her interactions with local immigrant communities, she has seen firsthand the breadth and depth of challenges encountered by ESL—English Second Language—immigrants. At the end of 2019, she decided to create a platform specifically designed for immigrants grappling with the English language in the United States. Her website, Be My English, pairs English-proficient volunteers to ESL immigrants; the site strives to provide a reliable platform to which they can submit English writing, thereby serving as a backboard for ESL immigrants to opt into English-proficient occupations. She hopes to continue creating space and advocating for ESL immigrants in college, where she plans on studying mathematical biology and business.
Grace Jaeger-Sandruck (CA ’22) is an avid member of the STEM community at Cary Academy and works to promote equity in STEM for all people. Women are underrepresented and often unwelcome in most STEM areas; Grace's goal is to change this reality. Grace is here to share with you the importance and necessity of having diversity in STEM fields and careers.
Currently attending The School for Ethics and Global Leadership, Jane Sihm (CA ’22) is constantly curious on how to make moral decisions. She believes that ethics is important in how to live our lives. Her talk stresses the importance of ethical design and the unforeseen consequences of unethical innovations. In her spare time, she volunteers, plays volleyball, and is an avid reader.
Always a student, Jay Sagrolikar (CA '21) is inspired by music and the world it shapes. As a musician as well as a leader on Cary Academy’s speech and debate team, he has found a love for sharing ideas in both words and notes.
JR Cobb (CA ’22) has a slightly worrying obsession with science. Whether it be in his science class or the athletic world, he recognizes the ever-reaching impacts that all aspects of science have on our lives. A member of the Science Olympiad team, JR was fascinated by the prospect of gene editing and the new facet it adds to the meaning of biology. He is a member of the Speech and Debate team and is a competitive swimmer.
Kali Bate (CA '22) is an avid solo violinist and chamber musician who strives to bring music education to underserved youth in her community. Her love of music and desire to make a difference inspired her to write two children’s books. All profits benefit a local music-for-social-change program. She feels everyone should have access to music education and the incredible impact it can have on their lives. She strongly believes that music offers our society an answer to our quest for justice and equality. In addition to playing the violin and sharing her passion, Kali is a co-captain of the Cary Academy Speech Team.
Katherine He (CA ’22) is a junior at Cary Academy from Raleigh, NC. She loves math and science and is excited about combining her interests in speech with research. Her lifelong goals include solving tough problems to let people live better, helping people become more united, and visiting different places in the world. She is trilingual, enjoys public speaking, and plays tennis and the piano.
Mary Esposito (CA '21) is a serial businesswoman who began her entrepreneurial journey when she was 14. After falling in love with marketing and ecommerce, she now runs two companies at the age of 17. Her crochet business, Purple Pear, and her jewelry business, Autonomy Jewels, are her pride and joy. Being exposed to the world of business at such a young age has taught her that there are no age restrictions when it comes to being your own boss. With the rise of social media, teenagers now have the world at their fingertips and as a result, entrepreneurs are becoming younger and younger. Mary debunks common misconceptions about today's teenagers and argues that-- in this digital age-- Gen Z has the potential to change the world.
Sophia Khoudary (CA '22) is a lover of all animals, especially her backyard chickens. After the death of her beloved rooster, she dedicated herself to preventing any unnecessary chicken deaths. In this TEDx talk, Sophia discusses her innovative solution to problems surrounding the poultry industry. Of course, nothing worthwhile is easily accomplished, and this is no exception to the rule. Throughout her speech, she describes the challenges and shifts that have changed her project- demonstrating any feasible idea must be adaptable.
Vibhav Nandagiri (CA ’21) is, at his core, a student-athlete. Having first fallen in love with tennis over a decade ago, in recent years, he found himself growing increasingly fascinated with the science behind the sport. Through a summer STEM research camp, he got his first introduction to the vibrant field of exercise science, where he met like-minded and equally motivated peers who wanted to make a palpable difference on people’s health and wellbeing. Alongside his research team, he began working through the Appalachian State Pediatric Exercise Laboratory to study the adolescent metabolism and its impacts on how we exercise. In this talk, he discusses the fruits of his research into the important exercise intensity known as FATmax, along with some useful exercise pointers for athletes and non-athletes alike. He plans to continue his passion for athletics and scientific research into his future.