By AMANDA ROSATONE Maha Kourikchi

Now having graduated Malden High School ranking 6th in her class, senior Maha Kourikchi is able to look back on her experience as being memorable and an important part of her life. She is now ready to move on to college and attending Bucknell University in the fall, Kourikchi has high hopes for her future.

Everyone’s high school experience is different, however, in most cases, these years are very formative and important in one’s life. Reflecting back on her time at MHS, Kourikchi expresses that “[she was] so fortunate to have attended a school as diverse and unique as [MHS and although] there have been times where [she] felt overwhelmed and stressed out, [she feels] as though MHS has allowed [her] to mature and grow as an individual.” Transitioning into college is never an easy task, however, Kourikchi also expresses that her time at MHS “has especially prepared [her] for the future and for college.” Considering Kourikchi found her years at MHS very significant, “[she] found [her]self taking part in more clubs, sports, and activities; [meeting] some of [her] closest friends this way” which inevitably made her time throughout high school all the more memorable and on the whole, enjoyable.

 Kourikchi, along with many graduating seniors, can look back on their high school years and realize some moments are naturally more memorable than others. For Kourikchi, her most memorable experiences were with Poetry Out Loud. Confessing that “hearing people recite poetry has always been something [she has] enjoyed” she also found it challenging and rewarding to “recite a poem of [her] choice” but she looks back on the experience as being “super exciting.” Since poetry has always been an interest to Kourikchi, it is really no wonder that in her experiences with Poetry Out Loud she made it “to the semi finals both [her] junior and senior year” and although she had the opportunity to recite a poem she liked, this experience was also beneficial to her in other ways.When asked about the overall experience of moving onto the semifinal rounds, Kourikchi remembers that “presenting in front of an entire audience was terrifying, but it was also exhilarating”  for her and this opportunity helped her “overcome [her] fear of public speaking by becoming more confident and less afraid of putting [her]self out there” which Kourikchi finds “absolutely incredible.”

Memorable experiences such as Poetry Out Loud made Kourikchi’s time in MHS meaningful,  however, she also managed to find strong strides academically. Taking a variety of AP classes, Kourikchi expresses that “[her] favorite subject would have to be science [because] there is just something so intriguing about learning how the human body works, as well as how the world around us works.” With this passion for science, Kourikchi “[hopes she] can pursue a career that relates to science in the future.” Kourikchi expresses that “the teachers [she had] were what made these classes so much more enjoyable [and] even though these classes assigned a lot of work and were overwhelming at times,  [she does] not regret taking them.”

On the whole, Kourikchi will be able to look back on her high school years with few regrets. Throughout her four years at MHS, she has found that “what differentiates you from others can sometimes feel like a burden, but it is actually what makes you great.” With this, she also states that she would encourage incoming freshman “to not be afraid to be different, because staying true to oneself is extremely important” and also to “get as involved as possible and to not be afraid to try new things [because] high school is the perfect place to try new things, make mistakes, and essentially grow from these mistakes.”

Kourikchi plans on going to college in the fall with the same mindset as she hopes to gain “lifelong friends [and to] acquire a better understanding of who [she is] as an individual.”

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