By JULIE LAM Bestine Cong

As the year comes to an end, seniors across Malden High School are ready to turn to the next chapter. Among those seniors stands Bestine Cong, who is ranked as seventh in her class. Throughout Cong’s four years of high school, she was able achieve an outstanding GPA while being able to juggle other after school activities.

Although Cong is recognized as one of MHS’s top students academically, she is also very involved in sports. Starting from a very young age, Cong was a part of club swim team and also the MHS swim team the beginning of her freshmen year. Cong swam for the MHS swim team all four years and also was also able to help bring MHS the Greater Boston League champion title during her junior and senior years as captain. Throughout her excellent athletic achievements, Cong was awarded as the “MHS Athlete of the Year” at the end of this year. Cong expresses that she would love to continue her swimming career at Bucknell if there is a club team. MHS swim team coach Jessica Bisson describes Cong as very “hardworking,” who always “pushes to achieve what she wants.” Unfortunately, with her busy schedule, Cong does not believe she could handle swimming with the Division 1 team. Cong was also a part of the crew team her junior year.

Along her journey through high school, Cong has learned many things from her peers. One of her favorite things about high school is that “it really opened [her] up to so many different perspectives and beliefs.” Throughout her high school career, Cong also expresses her love for the experience of meeting many different people. When trying to specifically name a certain person that inspired her, Cong couldn’t just think of one. Cong reveals that there are many people that have influenced her including “[her] parents, friends, coaches, and teachers.” Cong also mentions that they all “[play] a significant part in influencing who [she is].”

Throughout most students’ high school career, they are bound to step out of their comfort zone. For Cong it was to take AP Physics. Cong expresses the level of difficulties of physics considering that she had no prior knowledge of it. After experience the course Cong also admits that physics is “unnaturally difficult,” and signing up for the class was a kind of “spur of the moment thing” where she thought she “might as well take it since it’s different” from other classes she has taken.

Since the fourth grade, Cong had strong feelings towards her studies of the Italian language. Cong confessed that “[her] absolute favorite subject, without a doubt, is Italian.” With her love and passion for the Italian language, Cong has concluded that she will be majoring in Italian while attending Bucknell University.

While attending Bucknell, Cong will actually be double majoring in biochemistry as well. Although Cong reveals that she isn’t sure what career she wants in the future, one of her goals are to fluently speak Italian and “go backpacking through Italy one day.”

As for next year, Cong plans to have a “balanced and productive first year at Bucknell,” and also be able to maintain her academics. Cong also plans to be involved with sports, clubs and meet as many new people as she possibly can.

Before leaving MHS, Cong advises underclassmen to not “be afraid of anything or anyone and if there’s something you want… work to earn it.”

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