NEWINGTON – The best advice Nghi Nguyen can give high school students today is to save some time for themselves in between academics and extracurricular activities.
The salutatorian of Newington High School’s Class of 2021, Nguyen aced the balancing act that was her teenage years.
“My high school experience…I think this year was actually really great,” Nguyen told the Herald Thursday, after celebrating graduation with her family. “I really appreciate everything the teachers have done to make things easier for us. Mr. Miller was so sympathetic to everything that we had to go through…I also appreciate everything Ms. Tigno has done for us in order to make our senior year the best it could be.”
She’s heading off to the University of Connecticut to pursue pre-pharmacy studies, in hopes of eventually earning a dual-degree in pharmacy and business administration.
The Newington native attributes her success to having a supportive family.
“My brother definitely served as an amazing example for me to what hard work and determination entails,” Nguyen said. “He was valedictorian of the Class of 2018 and it inspired me to do well in school. I also attribute a lot of my success to my parents, for supporting me through everything I do and just caring for me. Also, for allowing me to pursue the path I want and am passionate about.”
She lent her own support to fellow students at NHS, as president of the Peer Tutoring Club this whole past year. Nguyen was also in the NHS Marching Band all four years, serving as drill instructor the past two.
When the drama club premiered its 2020 musical, “Nice Work if you can get it,” Nguyen was playing her instrument in the pit orchestra.
As if her schedule wasn’t busy enough already, she was also a member of the Math Team the last four years.
“It’s going to be weird to get used to the lack of routine,” Nguyen said of her departure from the hallways of NHS. “I’m going to miss the bond everyone has at the high school; the ‘Family of Learners’ Ms. Tigno created; it’s such a positive environment. I’m also going to miss being able to see my friends every day. Many of them are going to school out of state.”
Being well-rounded is important to Nguyen, who says “time management” is definitely key in high school.
“We’re always so caught up in the business of sports, clubs or school work,” she said. “In order to do your best you have to be able to save some time for yourself and take care of yourself. Also, let loose and hang out with your friends.”
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.