Written by volunteer writer Amy Freeman
Over the past few weeks, we’ve been talking to graduating members of the Techgirlz’ Teen Advisory Board (TAB), to find out how their senior year of high school went, what their summer plans are, and where they’re headed in fall. This week, we’re catching up with Sriya Konda and Dhivya Arasappan to see what’s in store for them.
Sriya Konda recently finished an action-packed senior year at BASIS Phoenix. While she spent much of her time applying to college and working on her senior project, she also had room in her schedule for a few extracurricular activities. As a member of her school’s DECA team, she competed in business-focused contests, in the category of automobile services marketing.
She was also a member of the senior committee, an organization that puts together activities for the graduating class, such as Senior Assassin, homecoming, the senior trip, and graduation.
As a member of the TAB, Sriya has worked hard to bring TechGirlz to Phoenix. She’s contacted a few local organizations, such as the library, to see about setting up workshops and is considering trying online programming, too.
She says that she “absolutely loved being on the Teen Advisory Board,” and that it “has been an amazing pleasure of mine to meet all these wonderful people and hear the knowledge that they have to share with us.”
Her advice to anyone who might be thinking of joining the TAB is to get inspired by the other members on the board. She also notes that the TAB is “what you make it to be.”
Sriya is looking forward to learning Python over the summer, as many college courses are taught in Python. She plans on attending Carlton College in the fall for computer science.
Although her senior year didn’t go quite as planned, reflecting back on it, Dhivya Arasappan says that she “had a wonderful time.” She spent much of the first part of the year filling out and sending in college applications while remaining focused on school work. During the second part of the year, she loved having a literature and composition class each morning and the chance to race through her school’s courtyards on rainy days after lunch.
She was the co-captain of the varsity girls squash team and held the number one position. The team finished third in Division III at the 2020 HEAD U.S. High School Team Squash Championships in Connecticut.
Some of Dhivya’s favorite memories from her time at Conestoga have come from working on the school’s literary magazine, The Folio. She says it’s “one of the best things that I’ve been involved in at school. I’ve found so much humor, laughter, and positivity as part of the literary magazine and met some truly amazing people.” She was a copy editor for the magazine and also had photos and a poem published in it.
Dhivya also received the Congresswoman Chrissy Houlahan Good Citizenship Award and the PEO Star Scholarship Award.
When she first joined the TAB at 14-years-old, Dhivya was a little unsure about what to expect. Looking back on the past four years, she says that she’s had an “absolutely phenomenal time” on the board. Being part of the TAB has elevated her confidence while developing her love of technology and teaching.
“I’ve learned so much at TechGirlz from how to be an effective communicator to developing skills to organize and plan workshops and working with younger girls,” she says.
Dhivya plans on going to the University of Pennsylvania in the fall, where she’ll major in neuroscience. She’s also looking forward to taking courses in public policy and economics.
Come back next week to see what the other members of the TAB have been up to!