Humans of Harker: Sandip Nirmel develops new hobbies


Nicole Chen

“I have a dog and his name is Captain. In some ways, I’m an only child, so he’s pretty much my brother. I pet him, take him on a walk, run, stuff like that, it really gives me perspective. His life is so simple, he only cares about food and play and if I’m getting stressed out, if I see my dog, I realize that there’s a lot more to life than just school,” Sandip Nirmel (12) said.

by Nicole Chen, Features Editor

Although you wouldn’t know it from hearing Sandip Nirmel (12)’s deep announcer voice at school meetings, he wasn’t always a confident speaker.

While Sandip serves as the president of the student body, he has gone a long way to obtaining this position. In middle school, Sandip was somewhat introverted until he decided to start becoming more involved with student government.

“[Running for student government] was a good decision not because I won, but because it gave me more confidence in other activities knowing that I could present myself as a qualified person,” he said. “Student government was something I wanted to do because I’d always see things that I had like to change in the school, but I had never voiced my opinions, so running really gave me the opportunity to try that out.”

Sandip also joined Model United Nations as an effort to try new activities and has become an active member. His work within the Model United Nations community proved to benefit him in being a more effective communicator and public speaker.

His ambition towards finding new hobbies drove him to start golf at seven years old. His father first exposed him to the sport, and he gradually increased his time practicing. Sandip practices over the weekends and joins the Harker varsity golf team to play during the season.

Sandip’s time playing golf also expanded to help him develop a sense of how driven he was by his personal goals.

“I’m chasing my own goals, and I set those goals really high, so that’s what really drives me,” Sandip said. “If I set a goal to lower my scores in goal by a certain amount of strokes, I’m going to work hard until i can achieve that, and whether it leaves me winning tournaments or losing tournaments it’s not a big deal, but if I can meet my own goals, I’m doing pretty good.”

Other than golf, Sandip spends his time fostering his musical hobbies, including the piano, violin and trumpet. He started the piano, violin and trumpet at the ages of three, five and nine, respectively. Sandip chooses to avoid the competition aspect of music, and instead, plays these instruments for his own enjoyment.

“I’m really detail oriented, so getting the right notes means a lot to me,” Sandip said. “I play for my personal enrichment. Just doing that and also producing good music that just sounds good to yourself [makes me] feel pretty good about [myself].”

While balancing many school activities, Sandip hopes to use what he’s learned to overcome the struggles he faces.

“Obviously [there is] a lot of academic stress, [and] personal goals, and those are all real things, and whether or not I’m going to overcome it is through the same forward looking mentality that I’ve always had,” Sandip said. ”There’s some days where I get really frustrated, and getting frustrated is going to do anything for me, so I just have to power through it.”

This piece was originally published in the pages of The Winged Post on November 16, 2016. This article’s photo was updated on May 28, 2019.