December 2014 Student Spotlight

Aly Khan Bhamani, University of Chicago


High School: Santa Monica High School
JK Center: Los Angeles HQ, West Region
College Attending in the fall: University of Chicago
Other colleges where you were accepted:
Williams College
Brown University
Northwestern University
University of California, Irvine
University of California, San Diego (UCSD)
University of California, Berkeley
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)
University of Southern California (USC)
University of Washington

High School Activities:
Red Cross Club
Ballroom Dancing
2 years of Band
2 years of Yoga
4 years as Delian (California Honors Society)

Extracurricular Activities:
Executive Board Member and Community Outreach Member: Red Cross of Santa Monica
Aga Khan Foundation Partnership Walk- Entertainment Team
Library Tutoring- Math and Science
UCLA Center for World Languages
Camp Mosaic: Swimming counselor
Global Encounters 2012 participant
Gates Millennium Scholarship
National AP Scholar

Favorite Hobby: Swimming
Favorite Food: French fries
Favorite Quote:
“On the mountains of truth you can never climb in vain: either you will reach a point higher up today, or you will be training your powers so that you will be able to climb higher tomorrow.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

What during high school best helped you achieve success?:
“During high school I approached each class with the intention that it could teach me something beyond the curriculum. For me, each class is an opportunity to challenge myself and explore the world around me. With this approach, I learned more about myself than I ever expected! It’s also important to remember that everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes I did not get the scores I wanted and it was important that I took responsibility for my shortcomings. It’s important to learn from your mistakes and look for a way to improve the situation. One bad score doesn’t mean anyone should lose hope of attending the college of your dreams or getting that 4.0.

It’s also always important to ask for help. ?Whether you’re struggling with class material or writing a college essay, there is no harm in asking for assistance. Ask your Ismaili brothers and sisters or school counselors and teachers. Never be afraid to seek help.”

What advice do you have for incoming/current high school students to succeed?
“Time management is a skill I struggled with but I realized that with mastering it comes a good night’s sleep, a healthy diet, and much less stress. If you can work without the distractions of mobile devices, Facebook, vines, Snapchat, and whatever else is distracting you, then managing 4 AP classes, a sport, and two healthy extracurriculars becomes significantly less challenging. Focus is the key to any successful academic experience.

My second piece of advice is to get an internship and utilize your summers wisely. No summer should be spent idly waiting around the house for school to start or only studying for the SATs. An internship sets you apart from the rest of the crowd and you can score that recommendation letter that makes all the difference. ?It also gives you a skill set and a taste of the professional world. An internship is not just something colleges love; it’s a life changing experience. “

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