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Seniors of CPS (4/17): Rachel P, Dahlia P, Darius S, Lily K, Cameron S, Ella H

(from left to right, top row to bottom) Rachel Peterson, Dahlia Pollack, Darius Suplica, Lily Kunczynski, Cameron Sacks, Ella Herz - Interviews Conducted by Anna Chard, Phoebe Shin, Celia Lehmann Duke, and Nora Wagner

This week, your Humans of CPS Team interviewed six lovely seniors— Rachel, Dahlia, Darius, Lily, Cameron, and Ella — for our tenth week of Seniors of CPS interviews. Some were interviewed in sunny living rooms, others in quiet bedrooms, or even at school! These interviews include responses to various questions designed to help you get to know our seniors a bit better and to give you some insight into their memories from the past four years at College Prep. We hope you enjoy!

Q: What is something unique about you/a fun fact that your classmates might not know?

Rachel: I know how to windsurf! That’s something that people don’t really know— I’ve been windsurfing for the past five years, from back in the summer of 2015 or 2016. I went to a summer camp in Baltimore, since I always go to Baltimore every summer— that’s where my mom’s family is from— and so I went to an ultimate watersports summer camp there, and I ended up doing the camp for five years after that, or until I was too old. But I still windsurf out in Alameda Beach!

Dahlia: This is kind of random, but when I was little, around like 8 or 9 or 10, I saw Dallas Braden pitch a perfect game for the A’s on Mother’s Day, so that was pretty exciting.

Darius: So, the tricky part about this question is that it’s a balancing act between something fun and interesting, and something that I actually want my classmates to know. I’m trying to find the middle portion of the Venn diagram, because it’s not exactly a circle. Well, a lot of people already know this, but it has led to a lot of “fun” experiences in my life. I have an extraordinarily bad nut allergy, so last year, one of my friends decided it was a great time to give me this cookie. Turns out that cookie had a nut in it! A bit through Dr. C’s AP Biology class— great experience, but not too great tests— I had to leave the classroom to get my EpiPen. People were pretty alarmed when an ambulance pulled up next to the science building. Jonathan Roven, I will never forget you for trying to murder me. I’m going to college with this person, so I’ll be able to constantly remind him of that.

Lily: I grew up without using electronics or any of that. The only times I got to watch movies, I’d have to watch them in French because my dad speaks French. Now, I hate being on my phone— I get mad at other people when they’re on their phones, and I don’t like being on my computer. But yeah, I don’t really like electronics. I got like an iTouch or something around the time that I was in 5th grade, but we got our electronics taken away at night and stuff. I didn’t have an iPhone until highschool.

Cameron: One thing I’ve picked up over quarantine is DJing and music producing. I’m definitely very amateur at this point, but not many people would know that about me, because it’s so new. My dad just got this new mixer, so I’ve been able to dabble and experiment with a bunch of songs. It’s been really cool. I’m definitely looking to improve.

Ella: I’ve been trying to teach myself to play the harmonica. I don’t think a lot of people know that! I’m actively terrible at it, but it’s kind of fun to play around with! It’s one of the simpler instruments.

Q: What is one word you would use to describe your four years at College Prep?

Rachel: I would say it’s been entertaining. I’ve had many funny moments— maybe not in the moment, but looking back, there’s been a lot of hilarious moments that I’ve shared with teachers and with friends. And I think it’s also interesting seeing where people started off, and where we ended up now. I’m definitely going to be leaving CPS with some really great memories, so I think entertaining works well.

Dahlia: Thought-provoking? That’s sort of two words, but I guess it’s also sort of one word?

Darius: I’d say CPS has been very transformative. If you looked at little freshman me, who was only about yea-high, and me now— at least average height— you’d see a lot of changes. I feel like I’m a very different person. I’ve had a lot of chances to change, a lot of chances to grow. I’ve learned more stuff, hung out with more people, and seen more things.

Lily: Pretty formative. I think a lot has gone down in the past four years, academically and socially, and it has made me learn a lot about myself and what I actually want. So yeah, formative.

Cameron: With just one word, I’d have to say informative. I feel like that really embodies the entire experience. A lot of the conversations I’ve had in classes, and the friendships I’ve made, and students and teachers I’ve met have informed the person I am now.

Ella: I knew this question was coming. I’m going to go with enriching!

Q: How would you describe your four years at College Prep and the people that you spent those four years with?

Rachel: I would say that CPS has been very eye-opening and informative about who I am as a person— in terms of finding out who I am, and the things I like to do, or don’t like to do, or who I like to be around— and I definitely learned a lot about myself throughout the whole process. I think I can definitely say that I know a lot more about myself than I did four years ago, and I think CPS has really challenged me in a lot of ways as well. Not necessarily just academically, but also challenging my own moral views, and what’s right or wrong for me, and I think CPS and the whole experience has really helped me in finding out who I am.

Dahlia: I think I changed a lot, but probably more on the inside than on the outside— I think about the world in a really different way than I did when I got to CPS. And I think for the first time in my life, for some complicated reason, I really had space, to breathe and figure out who I wanted to be. And I think I really learned that from some people I was close to— one person in particular.

Darius: Generally, it was very, very fun. There was a lot of stuff to do, but also a good deal of stuff that was manageable— I mean, everyone was so helpful. I don’t think there’s anyone in this grade that I don’t like. I’ve met so many awesome people. Just to encapsulate the whole experience, I’d say it’s been a super fun time.

Lily: It changed a lot. I went through a bunch of different… not exactly phases, but I was friends with a lot of different people, and I did a lot of different academic things. I tried a lot of things. Not all of them worked out, but I don’t know. I tried a ton, and I feel like at the end of it all— during quarantine, when I’ve spent time by myself— I feel like I’ve been able to sort through a lot and figure out what I actually want to take away from everything. Also, I don't regret anything that has happened in high school. A lot of **** has gone down, but I really don’t regret anything.

Cameron: I had a blast! Coming in freshman year, I was kind of worried I’d be going to this “nerd school,” and I wouldn’t make any friends, and a lot of my time would be consumed by schoolwork. It didn’t end up being like that, at all. I learned a lot, and formed some really great friendships. Overall, I had a lot of great experiences that will last a lifetime.

Ella: It’s been mostly good. I’ve really enjoyed it. Obviously there are things that — you know, the stress was something that I could’ve done a little better— but it was amazing, and it was really nice to have people to share that with. All of the people here are just so incredible, and I learned so many things from so many people that I never even expected I would have ended up talking to. That’s probably actually been my favorite thing about College Prep: talking to different people and learning about them and learning from them. That’s been really cool, so yeah… I’ll go with that.


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