Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy Celebrates Academic Signing Day
National Signing Day for athletes announcing their intentions to attend and play sports for a certain college has grown in popularity over the years. So much so that television networks like ESPN sometimes cover the moment an athlete announces his or her decision. Several years ago, Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy decided to recognize the students who were making their decision based on academics. Some students added moments of drama similar to the athletic event, choosing one school’s hat over another or revealing a t-shirt beneath a jacket, but for most, it was just a moment for the students to celebrate each other as their high school careers came to an end.
The Class of 2023 at Eagle’s Landing Christian Academy had 81 members earning over $50 million in academic, arts, and athletic scholarships and grants. That achievement makes the entire faculty and administration at the school happy, as well as parents looking at four years of college tuition. For the students, that large sum represents potential freedom from lots of student loans and a world of choices.
Lily Wu, the school’s valedictorian this year and a Presidential Scholar, chose Northwestern University. Wu plans on majoring in data science and is excited to live in Chicago.
“I really like the city and feel like there are a lot of opportunities there,” said Wu, who was President of the Student Government Association, captain of the varsity soccer team, and a member of the mock trial team.
Wu was not specifically focused on earning the title of valedictorian but always did her best. She stated her best class was math but that AP government was also fun. In addition to receiving the Georgia Certificate of Merit, Wu was also named Most Outstanding Freshman and Sophomore at the school, created an annual fund, and raised donations for books and equipment for a school in Jiangsu, China. She was a co-founder of Taste of ELCA and COO, Co-founder, and 15 percent shareholder in The Six Capital Incorporation, which focused on foreign exchange market trading.
Miller Doerr, the school’s salutatorian, is heading to Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., with a plan to study film production. A four-year member of the cross-country team, president of Mu Alpha Theta (math society), and member of the mock trial team, Doerr felt blessed to be a part of academic signing day after being a viewer in the past.
“It was kind of bittersweet. It was great to see my friends getting their scholarships, but a little tough to think that it will be a while before I see some of them again,” said Doerr. “I will always remember a lot of the things I did in school, but I will remember the people I did them with more.”
Doerr was a National Merit Finalist this year and also got an All-Star Cast medal with his co-stars at the One Act Play state championships this year.
Sahil Trivedi selected Georgia Tech at the Academic Signing Day event this year. He is planning on majoring in business as a pre-med student and attending medical school after college. Trivedi is interested in exploring either cardiology or dermatology as a career. For many of his friends, his announcement at signing day was the first they heard of his intent. He had been looking into attending Mercer University, but his sister had attended Georgia Tech, and it felt like the best fit. Trivedi has been very interested in business, finance, and economics in high school. He has published papers on a Keynesian response to a recession, provided analysis on the stock market in newsletters and briefings, and believes that a business degree makes him well-rounded and provides a good backup if medicine doesn’t work out.
“I’m excited to start college and have some more independence, but it’s kind of crazy this part of my life is coming to an end,” said Trivedi. “I’ve known some of these kids, like Lily and Miller, since elementary school.”
Trivedi was a member of the mock trial team and the chess team. He entered the state science fair in 11th grade, won first honors for environmental engineering, and received an award from National Geographic.
Like Trivedi, Katherine Spence has a goal of becoming a doctor as well. She selected the University of Georgia with a plan to go pre-med and become an OB-GYN. Among the many accolades she has received, Spence was the winner of the DAR Good Citizen Award and the Presidential Volunteer Service Award. She was also a varsity cheer captain and Vice President of Internal Affairs for the Student Government Association.
“Signing day was great because it was fun to see my peers go off to the next step and have a nice moment together,” said Spence. “We were a very close-knit class.”
Spence also recognized the impact of her AP Calculus and AP Physics teacher, Ms. Burer, for making her senior year special.
“She taught two of the hardest classes and was always willing to help,” said Spence. “She was also our Senior Mom, really down to earth, and definitely made a big difference.”
If the accolades earned by the Class of 2023 at Eagle’s Landing Christian is any indication, these students will make a big difference in the world too.
By Mike Boylan