Enjoying the journey

Busy schedules and hard work didn’t stop Harper De Andrade from enjoying his high school career

Harper de Andrade is easily one of the hardest working students in Riverside, but he still managed to enjoy high school. 

Harper was part of Riverside’s PLTW program for his entire high school career. When he wasn’t excelling in class he participated in Battle of the Books, Robotics Club and The North Carolina Junior Classical League. 

His work inside and out of the classroom created opportunities to do big things. 

“I was given the option to stay at Riverside and graduate early rather than go to NCSSM,” de Andrade said. “With Covid and everything it just seemed like the safest choice for me and my family’s health. Graduating early and going to Duke feels pretty incredible honestly. Especially given that I have been welcomed into the school as a Benjamin N. Duke Scholar so I am now able to go to Duke without the financial burden of paying for a Duke education.”

The college application process wasn’t a solo job for Harper. He had teachers helping along the way.

‘[Applying for college] was definitely a group effort, especially applying with only 2.5 years of classes before admissions,” he said. “Mr. Stallings definitely deserves a shout-out for talking to me about college choices and reassuring all of his students that no matter where we ended up going, that we would be okay.’

With so many accomplishments to choose from, de Andrade struggles to nail down what he’s most proud of in his entire high school career. 

“I would say my greatest accomplishment so far is staying involved in robotics and the JCL at the highest capacity possible while still having fun,” de Andrade said. “I don’t really know how to word it, but I’m just so surprised that I was able to keep up with all of it and I’m proud that I somehow did.”

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