My life before FSA was much harder academically and wasn’t as fulfilled as my life now. When I was in elementary school, I didn’t enjoy going to school because it felt like all our classes were rushed and I wasn’t getting the help I needed. However, there are a lot of memories I made there with some of my friends. I will never forget November 18th, 2016, which was the last day before Thanksgiving break started. Every year around Thanksgiving, our 3rd grade teacher would throw a huge potluck and anyone who had been in her class previously was invited. At the time, I was in 3rd grade and was on my way to recess with a couple of my friends. We had a big race to see who could get to the yard first, but what we didn’t realize was that the floor was wet. We made a hard turn and all fell like dominos. We were all soaking wet but didn’t have a care in the world. Someone who would goof around and wanted to just have fun. That’s who I am. It’s those little stories that can tell you a lot about a person. Those are the memories I cherish and hold onto.
I would say that I wasn’t always that good at math. During my time at elementary school, I would have trouble with arithmetic, like multiplying and dividing fractions. My teachers always told me that it was because I overthink problems that should be fairly easy, but I think it was just because I was challenged with numbers. During my time at FSA, I was really able to get a grip on math. I think I was able to get a better understanding because the teachers really try to engage and make sure you get the material we’re going over. Whether it was going over it with you one-on-one, or letting you do missing work. If you're having trouble with something all you have to do is ask. Same thing goes for science. I wasn’t the brightest student in the lab, but once the teacher started to break down the work it made learning science way easier and now I would say it’s one of my strongest subjects.
Being at FSA has changed me as a person, but in a positive way. People who knew me before my time at FSA would probably tell you that I was a shy person. I didn’t try to get to know strangers and kept to myself. Now that I’m in my third year and will soon graduate, I’m able to talk to my peers and teachers. I’ve really grown into someone who’s willing to spend time and socialize with others. Not only the teachers, but the students have really helped me break out of my shell and become the person I’m right now.
Another thing that’s really important to me are sports, but especially football. At a very young age I stayed active and played multiple sports like soccer, basketball, baseball, and football. I didn’t like the other sports as much as football, so I stuck with it and still play to this day. One of the major reasons I like football is because it’s a sport that involves teamwork. You can’t play with over or under 11 players and everyone has one goal, to get the ball into the end zone or keep it out. After playing for a while you start to build bonds with the people around you, and start to notice how close you guys are to each other. I’ve been playing football with the same group of kids for the past seven years, and we plan on taking it to the next level at high school and even further.
The person I interviewed was my father. What my success means to him is everything. “It’s a stepping stone. A beginning of a new journey. I felt like attending SI is a great opportunity. An opportunity that wasn’t available to us growing up. I’m excited to see you take advantage of all the opportunities that SI has to offer. Also, being able to further your education at a school that is considered one of the most difficult in San Francisco is mind blowing. I feel like SI is a great academic school and will prepare you for college. It shows that no matter where you come from, with hard work and dedication anything is possible.”-Siaki Hunkin. My academic and athletic successes are some of the most important things to me. Not only is accomplishing a goal that you worked so hard for satisfying, but seeing that same satisfaction on the faces of the people I love is what I want to really accomplish. Yeah, success is a great feeling, but does it really feel amazing if you don’t have anyone to celebrate it with? I want to succeed to make my family and the people who supported me proud. That’s why succeeding is a priority and I will accomplish it.
Something that I want to grow or improve is my education and academics. What I mean by this is to take my studies to a new level where I’m challenged to work harder and harder every day. For the past few years, FSA has been helping me and my classmates get ready for that next level. But I still feel like there’s a lot of work that needs to be done, and I think SI is a piece of that puzzle. One of my main goals is to play college football and attend a power 5 school where I’m not only recognized for my athletic abilities but for my academic achievements. I think SI will help me get closer to achieving that goal because they’re all about academics and preparing you for college, but they also give you the help and tools you will need during that 4 year process. Like I said in the beginning, I want to attend a school that challenges its students to work hard, and I think SI is the perfect place to do that.