Harker Aquila

Humans of Harker: Through the posts

“[Soccer has] given me an opportunity to mentor the younger kids. They'll ask me a question about something that's maybe not directly soccer-related: whether it be that they have school questions, or that they have [questions about] just life in general. It's always fun, and it feels good. I'm an only child, and I've never had a little brother before, but they're all little brothers to me, especially the sophomores,” Shomrik Mondal (12) said.

by Vishnu Kannan, Winged Post Sports Editor

April 27, 2020

Music blasting from a stereo speaker set on the turf of Davis Field, Shomrik Mondal (12) places a brown Wilson football on a kicking tee set on the right hash marks of the 35-yard line. After taking three long paces back from the spot of the tee, he takes two short, calculated, and angled steps to his right, ...

Humans of Harker: Purposeful ambition

“I definitely gravitate towards people that have some sense of ambition ... When I feel like we're all working towards something that we want, I feel like we have a connection and it's easy to relate to them,” Annie Ma (12) said.

by Tiffany Chang, TALON Reporter

April 27, 2020

Whether it be picking a theme, filtering through submissions or designing pages, publishing the Harker Eclectic Literary Magazine (HELM), a journal full of students’ artwork and creative writing pieces, proves to be a challenging feat and onerous process regardless of the circumstances. Yet in the f...

Humans of Harker: Stepping up and speaking out

“At Harker this is a little less apparent, but there are still a lot of components in debate that limit the potential of girls or non-male identifying people to succeed. People at Harker often don’t recognize the problems that exist outside of our community, so debate has really opened my eyes by teaching me about critical theory and things like race, gender and class,” Madison Huynh (12) said.

by Sabrina Takemoto, TALON Seniors Editor

April 26, 2020

As she presses the start button on her timer, which is clipped to the very edge of her laptop, Madison “Maddie” Huynh (12) rapidly speaks about the topic of nuclear warfare in front of her opponent and a judge, rarely taking a gasp for air. Starting in the sixth grade, Maddie has been an active membe...

Humans of Harker: Arms wide open

“When I'm doing something nice, randomly, it doesn't seem like a huge thing for me. It's a small thing for me, but it makes a difference and has a positive influence on someone else,” Neal Sidhu (12) said.

by Jasleen Hansra, TALON Reporter

April 26, 2020

Gathered around the single picnic table in the orchard in front of the RPAC, Neal Sidhu (12), dressed in a gray Harker water polo sweatshirt and black pants, cracks a joke that causes his entire group of friends to chuckle. He clutches his stomach and laughs loudly as one of his friends whispers a s...

Humans of Harker: Curiosity for culture and communication

“What people don’t realize is that there are a lot more similarities between cultures than people may think, and getting to access those similarities and getting other people to see those similarities for themselves is my personal mission,” Tiffany Zhao (12) said.

by Shinjan Ghosh, TALON Reporter

April 25, 2020

Opening the door to her car after an exhausting ride, Tiffany Zhao (12) was welcomed by the cheerful voices of children singing in unison. As the refreshing breeze blows through her hair, she steps down onto a path ascending the lush green hill in front of her, lined on both sides with smiling kids we...

Humans of Harker: Embracing empathy

by Varsha Rammohan, Co-Managing Editor

April 24, 2020

Smack! The small, black ball makes contact with the wall as Simren Gupta (12) extends her racket outward and lunges forward with her right leg. The ball hurdles back toward her with an alarming velocity, but she deftly hits a backhand that sends the ball flying. In fourth grade, Simren’s dad too...

Humans of Harker: Life in perspective

“Tragic things can happen so it's important to enjoy the time you have here, now, and bond with the people you are close with, to live a good life while you can,” Jaimin Bhagat (12) said. 

by Sarah Mohammed, Reporter

April 24, 2020

Laughing with his friends on a couch in Shah Hall, Jaimin Bhagat (12) presents his “standard” demeanor: a playful, lazy smile on his face, his sparkling eyes carefree as he describes the moment he drove all the way to Santa Cruz to pick up his new dog.  In this way, Jaimin makes a full effort to l...

Humans of Harker: Go green or go home

“You know when you love something it immediately clicks? That’s what happened for me when I started singing. Singing to me is therapeutic: when I’m not in the right mindset, I hum a tune or bop out to a song to motivate me. This feeling is amplified when I sing in a group; with our combined voices, I bring smiles to more faces than just mine,” Alex Shing (12) said.

by Tiffany Chang, TALON Reporter

April 22, 2020

Picture yourself sitting by a creek overshadowed with a lush canopy of leaves. Take a moment to soak in your surroundings. Close your eyes and listen to the slow trickle of the stream and the fervent fluttering of the birds above. This is Alexander “Alex” Shing’s (12) reality, a place unmarked ...

Humans of Harker: To help, to heal

“I want to save lives, and I think that's the base requirement for anyone who wants to go into medicine. But I also do love the sciences – I love the art of the diagnosis, how medicine is just a mixing pot of ideas. You need to take so many aspects of life, you need to understand so many parts of the human experience, of the human body to try to diagnose and try to treat a patient. Medicine is the care of people, not diseases,” Simar Bajaj (12) said.

by Erica Cai, Humans of Harker Profiler

April 21, 2020

You may know him as the creator of the renowned study guide compilations that, with over twenty courses, encompass four years’ worth of high school knowledge and help hundreds of students on a regular basis. You may know him as a medical blogger whose site boasts over 5000 subscribers and hundreds o...

Humans of Harker: Get ahead in the game

“I’d never expected to play volleyball at the collegiate level [or] to be on the club volleyball team that I’m on now, because when I was younger, whenever we played this team, we’d get nervous and think, ‘Wow, that’s Vision! That’s the top team!’ But now I’m playing with these girls, this is my team, and it’s so surreal,” Ashley Jazbec (12) said.

by Lucy Ge, Winged Post Asst. News Editor

April 20, 2020

A wave of quiet washes over the crowd as Ashley Jazbec (12) tosses the ball lightly in the air. Her open palm makes contact with the ball with a satisfying smack and sails over the net, wobbling slightly as it glides smoothly past the opposing team’s libero’s outstretched arms and onto the ground....

Humans of Harker: Dedicated to happiness

“Nothing I do is really about external approval anymore. When I do something, I do it because it makes me happy and because I genuinely enjoy doing it. When I put more effort into something, I’m more inclined to want to try harder at it in the future and then that will keep perpetuating itself and making me happy,” Sachin Shah (12) said.

by Aditya Singhvi, Co-Sports Editor

April 20, 2020

“Dedication.” That’s how upper school debate coach Greg Achten would describe senior Sachin Shah, echoing the sentiments of his friends and teammates.  “He’s the first kid to sign up for tournaments, and he goes to all of the tournaments,” Achten said. “He's gone from being somewhat s...

Humans of Harker: Contending with a purpose

“My mom always says, ‘don’t shortchange yourself’, [since] I feel like within Harker, there’s always the idea of not being good enough ... I think my mom does a really good job of encouraging me, because ... sometimes I get swamped in with the Harker culture. She tells me to focus and do what I can do, and that it’s going to be okay,” Amanda Cheung (12) said.

by Lavanya Subramanian, TALON Reporter

April 17, 2020

Amanda Cheung (12), surrounded by her sixth and seventh-grade mentees in the Introduction to Speech and Debate class, eagerly guides them through outlining a successful debate. They vigorously type their debate outlines around her as she leans over and suggests changes to strengthen their arguments. ...

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Class of 2020