She is number one in her class, she has a GPA 0f 4.0, she got accepted into Yale and MIT and won the Coca-Cola scholarship. She is Monica Chang and she is spectacular.
It has taken a lot to get to where she is right now. Monica says, “I owe so much to my parents, my teachers, my peers, and my support system. I’m really blessed to go to a school like Camas and have so many opportunities. I’ve been born with a lot of privileges that I know a lot of people don’t have, so I feel like it’s even more important to make the most of it and give back.”
Monica loves to start/create new things. In her sophomore year, she took a coding class and realized that only 3 girls were in that class. So in May 2017, she founded the Girls Who Code club. Then this year Monica, Rachel Blair and Abigail Jiang organized a club to bring a TEDx event to the Camas community. Monica loves TED talks and wants to bring this cool thing to the Camas community so she is.
College wise, she does not know what she wants to study. ”I see my interests as a Venn diagram… because I am interested in so much,” Monica says. One is technology. As mentioned before, she took her first computer science class when she was a sophomore and loved it. Another is marketing. She joined Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) which is a club that prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe. Another circle is STEM and research. At the start of high school, she joined the Math, Science, and Technology (MST) program. She says “Where I see them intersecting is possibly entrepreneurship and biotechnology.”
Monica followed around her father, who is a heart doctor, and what she noticed most about shadowing her father is how much technology is used. This made her start to realize that she might want to go into
Monica has also recently won the 2019 Coca-Cola scholarship where she gets a $20,000 scholarship. In DECA’s area competitions awards she has won 1st in Entrepreneurship Series in January 2019, 1st in Entrepreneurship Series January 2018, and 1st in Business Finance Series in January 2017. In April 2018 she was the DECA top ten international winners in public relations project.
She also has had many research opportunities. She was a research assistant at a neuroscience lab at Washington State University- Vancouver. There she studied diurnal variation in the parvalbumin and perineuronal nets in the rat prefrontal cortex. Beta-tested a program that analyzes confocal microscope images for staining intensity of neural structures. She also spent this last summer at a summer science program in biochemistry. Last summer she and 35 other high school students from around the world to attend a prestigious summer program at Purdue University.
Some other notable awards are National AP Scholar for received for scoring 3.5+ on 8+ AP tests. National Merit Scholar finalist and Presidential Scholar candidate.
Monica has also played classical piano since age 6 and even played at the Key club Concert last year. She likes the idea of classical music. She says “The idea that we can feel emotions from wave frequencies in the air coming together. That idea itself is kind of preposterous, wonderful and amazing.” She also loves the idea that some composer hundreds of years ago wrote these dots on a page and we can still feel those emotions today.
Kacie Lee says ”Monica is one of the brightest and most genuine people I’ve had the opportunity to know and I know she will do something great in the future.”
Overall Monica is a spectacular person and is going to do wonderful things in her life.