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Seniors of CPS: Ryan C., Mia A., Gisele D., Nato Y., Callum T., Kori M.

(From left to right, top row to bottom) Ryan Chan, Mia Alexander, Gisele de Souza Hemmerich, Nato Yeung, Callum Theiding, Kori Miyamoto (Seniors) - Interviews Conducted by Phoebe Shin, Rina Huang, Nora Wagner, and Araddhya Tibrewall

This week, your Humans of CPS Team interviewed six lovely seniors— Ryan C, Mia A, Gisele, Nato, Callum, and Kori for our tenth week of Seniors of CPS interviews. These interviews were conducted on different days throughout the first week returning from Spring Break, some while the day was sunny and light, and some huddled indoors to escape the rain, but they all held the same purpose: to share fun facts about our seniors and memories from their 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?

Ryan: Hold on, I have to think about this one for a second. Well, I don’t think people remember, but I played Frosh Soph Basketball. I had to retire, because…well, the particular moment I remember that convinced me to retire from basketball was getting a pass blocked from over my head. I was really short at the time.

Mia: Let’s see…I can do a few miscellaneous voice impressions. Like, I can do a mediocre Jar Jar Binks. *Mia gives a thrilling impression, so thrilling that it can’t even be captured in words* I can also do Pikachu! *pause* I’m trying to remember how I do it, sorry! *Another thrilling impression* I can kind of do Kirby. *The last impression, likewise, wows the interviewer*

Gisele: Good question. I feel like most people know most things about me…I guess one fun fact that people might not know is that I went to a very small school—there were 10 kids in my grade from K through 8. And in the grade below me, there were 2 kids. Coming to CPS, even though it’s a really small high school, it was a pretty big jump for me, so yeah that’s one thing.

Nato: I was talking about this recently, but I think something interesting—well I don't know if it's interesting––but the only soda I've ever tried is orange Fanta. I've never had Coke because the brown ones scare me—and Sprite…I don’t know! I'm not a big fan of the bubbles, so the only soda I've ever tried is orange Fanta. Are you a fan? Eh! I mean, it's okay––I give it like a 5/10, maybe a six.

Callum: A fun fact. Um, I think I just spend a lot of time working with like—I love training dogs. It's just kind of...not a hobby but just a pastime—I'll just do it with my dog. Cats to a lesser degree—they don't like being trained, but working with them is still fun! What is something you like to teach? Um, roll over is always good; dogs just love to do that. The best I've done with cats is getting them to come when you call their name, or when you move your fingers.

Kori: I think that a lot of people might not know that I have two moms, and that I actually have a half brother and half sister who are a lot older than me.

Q: Looking back at your experience at CPS, what is something you will never forget?

Ryan: I think the thing that was most memorable for me was goofing off with my friends in the back of the library. We would play games and do random stuff.

Mia: Something for me that was a really great experience were the van rides. I was never really a “sports person” before I came to CPS, but I decided to try it once I was here. One of my favorite memories from the sports seasons is the van rides. It’s so fun to talk to your teammates, see what gossip anyone has that week, and play hype music before the games.

Gisele: (Without missing a beat) I’ll definitely never forget the people and the relationships I’ve formed. I’m really excited to be going to college near some of them—and the relationships I’ve formed, even with COVID-19 and quarantine and not being able to see people, have been really magical. It’s been great getting to know such interesting and lovely human beings.

Nato: I kinda talk about this a lot, but tennis is something I feel like I would definitely remember for a long time. The people on the team are super fun, and the matches are always really fun, and I love that part of the year. Yeah, for sure. It’s such a time sink; it's crazy! But, it's super fun.

Callum: Um, I feel like the teachers. For some reason I feel like my chemistry teachers have just been stellar—Coakley and Vick, sophomore year. But then just generally—Nazarian for history, Ian for debate—I think all the teachers are so much fun to engage with.

Kori: A favorite memory is…probably just coming back from quarantine and seeing how everyone had grown! I think the last few months have also been really fun, just getting to know more people and experiencing high school fully again.

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

Ryan: I would say comedic, maybe. It’s just been a funny time.

Mia: I have an idea of a word, but I’m scrolling through a list of synonyms in my head. Okay, probably ever-changing. COVID definitely contributed to this, but I feel like every year was its own unique experience. Honestly, even every semester had its own vibe. My group of friends and I like to say that we have our own show with its own seasons. Like we say, “oh, season 2 just started!” or “that was the pilot, and today is episode 3.” It’s been very…not fragmented, but there’s definitely been different pieces of the whole. When I imagined high school in middle school, I thought it’d be a more cohesive experience.

Gisele: I’m sure this has already been used—and I’ve read the articles—but definitely transformational because I’m not the same person I was when I first came here. A lot of people I know are completely different people, and they’ve all changed for the better. There are so many experiences that change who you are, so definitely transformational.

Nato: Maybe like, I don't know. A lot of people use rollercoaster and stuff, and I feel like that's true! It's a lot of ups and downs, and definitely a lot of work and getting used to your routine and stuff, but I think it's worth it. And it's fun! There are pluses and minuses to it.

Callum: Oh god, four years? Um, that’s tough. I’d probably say like, rollercoaster? That's like one word. I feel like it's just, yeah. It's always super fun––ups and downs––and if I could come back I would.

Kori: I was thinking about this, and I think my word would be fulfilling, just because I learned so much and it also just made me really happy getting to know all my friends, and learning from all the amazing teachers we have. And so I think my experience was really fulfilling, and I’m excited to carry this with me throughout the rest of my life!

Q: What are you looking forward to in the future?

Ryan: I’m looking forward to meeting new people in college. Also, of course, keeping in touch with old friends from College Prep. That’s what I’d say.

Mia: I’m excited to build my life however I want to. You have a lot of restraints when you’re younger. You have school, and you have a pre-set schedule, and you’re limited in where you can go: I mean, I still can’t drive, mostly because I choose not to, because I’m fine with being chauffeured around. But yeah, I’m just excited to have goals and be able to realize them. I’ll have the freedom to decide for myself what I want my day to look like, what I want to look like, all that kind of stuff.

Gisele: Yeah, I’m looking forward to the last few weeks and just doing a lot of things that we didn’t get to do last year—prom, retreat, and so on. Kind of largely, I’m looking forward to coming back eventually to a reunion and seeing what people are up to. That’ll be really fun. We’re such a smart school, and I think we’ll all have interesting jobs and careers, and that’ll be great to see.

Nato: I think obviously like college and stuff, but also in assembly the “26 days of school left” thing, I was like this is crazy! I guess just that and finishing out the year with my friends and stuff, so yeah!

Callum: Just any future? Oh man, I think just like, I love backpacking. And I think I've got some little hikes in my mind—just some places to see, and that's something I'm looking forward to doing in college and after that. Anywhere in particular? Just go hiking down in Big Sur, or over in the Alps in Italy and Switzerland. I think that would just be cool, but that’s definitely like the most dreamy dream.

Kori: I think I’m definitely looking forward to spending the rest of the semester with my friends, going to prom—I’m excited about that—going to college and meeting new people and having real-world experiences. I think these past four years have gone by really fast, and I realize that I have no time to waste right now!

Q: If you could say one thing to your grade as you begin to close out your CPS journey, what would it be?

Ryan: I’d say thank you for making my time at high school a blast.

Mia: I’m sure a lot of people have said this, but thank you! I honestly believe that 2022 is an awesome class—junior class comes runner-up—because everyone in our grade is so friendly. I didn’t know anyone in freshman year, so I was really scared about being able to fit in. But now, even if I’m not the most social person, I feel like I can go up to any member of our class and strike up a conversation, because everyone is so welcoming.

Gisele: I would say thank you and ask everyone to keep in touch. We have a Wordle group chat (Other grades, this is stealable!) and I hope people continue to send their Wordles every day and keep in touch when people are back in town. We’ve been together for 4 years—it’ll be such a shame if we all just stop talking.

Nato: Uh, I don't know! A lot of people say thank you, so yeah, thank you! Also, it’s been lots of fun—I’m so glad I got to know everyone, and I can't wait to see what everyone gets up to in their next few years, and to keep in touch!

Callum: Thank you for an awesome four years! I think everyone’s been so kind, and also so much fun—volleyball, debate—it’s all been incredibly fun.

Kori: I would say that I am proud of everybody, because we all had a very challenging four years, but we made it through, and I’m excited to see everyone’s path in the future, and I’m proud of everyone for making it through!


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