The Balancing Act

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The Balancing Act

Holding his award strings junior Ray Jia poses for a picture with other award recipients at the science fair.

Holding his award strings junior Ray Jia poses for a picture with other award recipients at the science fair.

Photo courtesy of Ray Jia

Holding his award strings junior Ray Jia poses for a picture with other award recipients at the science fair.

Photo courtesy of Ray Jia

Photo courtesy of Ray Jia

Holding his award strings junior Ray Jia poses for a picture with other award recipients at the science fair.

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Contemplating over studying is something many of us find ourselves doing, the night before a big test. However, for vocal junior Mounika Vattigunta, band sophomore Simon Shugar, and strings junior Ray Jia, there is not even a second thought before they pull out their books and began to study.  

“I’m focused on academics because I want to expand my knowledge base,” Vattigunta said. “I want to use high school to learn as much as I can. At Dreyfoos, great resources and opportunities are available that should be used to their greatest extent.”

Although these students agree that academics are important, they also agree that their arts are also a necessity. They have come to the consensus that they should focus on both academics and arts, not favoring one over the other.

“I think they are of equal importance. The thing with art is, it actually ties into academics in a lot of different ways,” Jia said. “They supplement each other. When people measure intelligence, they never measure creative intelligence. I believe that creative intelligence is just as important as academic intelligence.”

With the common thread of academic focus, all of these students also have somewhat of a clear idea of what they would like to pursue when it’s time to pick a career.  They are already on the road to their dream now.

“In the future I want to be either an astrophysicist or environmentalist,” Shugar said. “A lot of the stuff they teach here has to do with that. I’m taking Physics 1, Calc AB, and next year I’m taking AP Enviro and AP Chem.”

Taking all of these classes for these students futures can be very time-consuming when it comes to studying and homework. Not only does it take time in school, but it also takes dedication and time out of school.

“I get home around 7:30 p.m. I spend about three to four hours on homework and studying, so I’m usually done by 11:30 p.m.,” Vattigunta said. “On weekends during the day, I usually catch up on all the lessons I didn’t understand or missed that week.”

Keeping focused while doing all this work requires motivation. When it comes to motivation these students make sure they have plenty of it whether it’s famous quotes or incentives.  

“I often think of the quote, ‘Chance favors the prepared mind’ whenever people ask about academics,” Jia said. “The whole point of school is [that] we’re supposed to prepare ourselves for the future. When you’re prepared, you can seize opportunities. I think this is why academics are so important.”

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