By KRISTEN LEONARD
Valedictorian is a well known title in high school, top of the class, ranked number one for GPA out of a large number of students, and this year this title is given to senior Blue and Gold member Vicki Ngan. Earning this title of the Class of 2014’s valedictorian is not just a simple task. Ngan shares that being a “lucky student who worked hard throughout high school” is how she achieved this accomplishment.
After spending four years at Malden High School Ngan has taken advantage of the opportunities that MHS has had to offer such as being a member of the cross country team freshman year, being a member of the tennis team freshman and sophomore year and being a member of The Blue and Gold newspaper for all four years. Ngan expresses that she enjoyed her sports experiences and they taught her “perseverance” and enjoyed the “inspirational words of encouragement that the coaches gave.” She shares that she still keeps up tennis, “[going] on the courts now and then for fun.” Her favorite activity that has memories she will cherish, are from being a member of the newspaper staff. Freshman year Ngan was a reporter starting out like any other freshman in the class, but next year moving up to a copy editor position. In her junior year she became Co-Head of Local and this year, her senior year, finally reached the top position, Co-Editor in Chief, the position that is the backbone of the newspaper.
Outside of school Ngan was involved in the Youth in Government club at the Malden YMCA, which helped her “grow in terms of empowering [her] confidence in public speaking,” as well as having a part-time tutoring job in a program in Chinatown during the weekends. Based on all of her activities, one could confidently say that Ngan is a very committed individual, taking on roles in the community that promote responsibility.
Ngan’s favorite part about MHS is, hands down, the teachers. “As a senior, I realized how much easier, or how easy it has been, to approach a teacher and ask them questions, not just regarding academics and the subject I am learning, but also life advice too,” Ngan remarks. Some of her favorite memories involve teachers such as “ranting to Mr. Gallagher about random topics every now and then, or conversing to Ms. Clapp about academics and college and future goals, or coming up with excuses to tell Ms. Marjomaa about why [she] can’t take the test on the date she set for [her], as well as asking for life advice as well.” Regarding what Ngan will remember most about high school she answers, “I will remember the teachers who guided my path through high school and taught me the necessary knowledge to prepare me for higher education, as well as my friends and people I’ve met that have helped me develop and think in ways I did not expect.”
Come fall, Ngan will be Wellesley College bound, studying Math and Economics along with Physics. She desires to pursue engineering for graduate school, but has not yet decided what field of engineering. Ngan chose Wellesley College due to “the empowerment and opportunities it has to offer as well as its small class sizes and individual attention” along with the fact that the professors and staff as a whole are “very friendly and encouraging.” One of Ngan’s goals in college, besides the obvious desire for education is to be “an active citizen, off and on campus.” Ngan is most excited, as any college freshman would be, to become independent and “[immerse herself] in the college culture.”
Advice to incoming freshman and other grades in high school from Ngan would be to “Be active in the high school and choose activities or clubs that you are passionate about. Everything will unravel itself from there if you are able to find what it is that makes you tick, because that is when work becomes enjoyable.” She also stresses to work hard in high school and to “take every opportunity given to you, even if the application process is long and you think it is drag, because it might just be worth it in the end.”
While the place of valedictorian will be filled every year by a new individual, Ngan’s shoes will never be filled by another student. She is a very intelligent student, with a strong will power to achieve anything she sets her mind to. MHS will truly miss this unique student, athlete, journalist, and friend and wishes her the best of luck for the future.