Aspiring engineer builds well-rounded background

Originally published in the January/February 2012 issue of The Banner. Written by Genesis Contreras, Opinions Editor.

Sue Pedapudi: Aspiring engineer builds well-rounded background in high school

Q: What clubs are you involved in and do you have any leadership positions in them?

A: FIRST Robotics (co-captain), marching band (section leader), National Honor Society (vice president), Chemistry Olympics (president), German Club (president), FBLA, Model UN, SGO, National German Honor Society and Asian American Club.At a glance...

Q: What college will you be attending come fall?

A: Most likely Georgia Tech for Aerospace Engineering.

Q: What led you to decide to pursue a career in Aerospace Engineering?

A: Being on the robotics team and being surrounded by technology and other engineers. I would love to emulate the teamwork and passion of the engineers that come in and mentor our team. Engineering is also a very in demand profession, and is very noble as well. I would love to work for NASA someday.

Q: Have you experienced any struggles that have shaped your personality or views?

A: In high school, it is not uncommon to lose friends, or feel betrayed by them. You should never let others put you down for their own enjoyment or satisfaction. My experiences in dealing with friends have helped me become a better person.

Sue Pedapudi

(right) Sue Pedapudi uses a drill to build a part of a robot used in competitions. Photos courtesy Sue Pedapudi.

Q: Are there any staff members that have made a positive impact in your life?

A: I would have to say Mr. Weiss, Mr. Goldman and Mr. Cokeley. Mr. Weiss is the reason I stayed on the robotics team. He showed me that if I put my mind to something, I can accomplish it. Mr. Goldman has been a great mentor and an eye for detail when it comes to robotics. Finally, Mr. Cokeley is not only the robotics coach, but a friend. He is the heart and soul of the robotics team and constantly drives the students to perform at the best of their ability. I cannot imagine my high school experience without him.

Q: What is your favorite class?

A: I’d have to say a tie between AP Biology/Honors Biology and Honors Physics. I just enjoy science classes in general.

Q: What has been your fondest memory at NBTHS?

A: Back in 2010 when I won my first robotics competition. I didn’t have very high expectations that year because I wasn’t sure how things would play out, but when we won it was amazing and ever since it has served as my inspiration for the work I do.

Q: What are you going to miss the most when you graduate?

A: I will definitely miss being in all the clubs I’m in because they are such a great way to meet new people, make new friends and explore different interests. But what I will miss the most are my friends. They say friendship isn’t about whom you have known the longest, it’s about who came and never left your side. I’ll never forget all the good times we have had together.

Q: What would say has been the greatest lesson you’ve learned in high school?

A: I think it’s been learning to prioritize. Being involved in so many clubs and activities, I had to pick and choose between certain things, because there was no way I could do everything at once. This started to affect my grades. That’s when I learned that grades matter above all, and that it is important to learn how to handle the responsibilities that are thrown at you without compromising something essential.

Q: What are you most looking forward to in the next few months?

A: The rest of the robotics season, especially championships in St. Louis. Also like every other senior, I’m looking forward to prom and graduation in June.

Q: Do you have any advice for future students?

A: I think students should get involved and stay involved. There are so many wonderful clubs and activities that students can take part in. The important thing is to commit to these activities and to not quit when things get bad. When you look back, you might regret not being more active. It is important to look back onto your high school years and not have regrets, knowing that you did everything you possibly could.

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