Slava Butkovich is an Academic All-Star from Blue Springs High School

SCHOOL: Blue Springs High School

HONORS: Top 1 percent; final GPA of 4.564; earned a perfect 36 on the ACT exam; earned a 2,380 on the SAT exam; took 20 AP tests by the end of senior year; summer research fellow at Baylor University; national finalist in U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad; U.S. Presidential Scholar semifinalist; National Merit Scholar; National AP Scholar and AP Scholar with Distinction; Davidson Young Scholar Ambassador; received American Chemical Society High School Chemistry Award; named to Missouri Scholars 100; Distinguished Finalist and State Award winner in the Prudential Spirit of Community Award program; received numerous awards in math and chemistry competitions; president of the National Honor Society.

ACTIVITIES: President of the Math Team; co-founder of the Association for Cultural and Ethnic Diversity; leads community service project for volunteering at local nursing homes and senior centers with ethnic and folk string quartet performances; member of Students Against Destructive Decisions; member of KC Strings Advanced Chamber Orchestra; participates in orchestra at the high school level.

What advice do you have for next year’s freshmen?

There are a lot of evil people in this world. Do not let yourself be influenced by them. Embrace challenges, for they are the true tests of ability and power. Above all, fight for what is right and good. A life spent wallowing in immorality and selfishness is not worth much at all.

Who was your favorite teacher and why?

Mr. (Evan) Manuel was my favorite teacher because he did more than just teach me chemistry. He taught me valuable problem-solving skills that can be used in a wide variety of real-life situations.

When you were not in school or studying, what did you most enjoy doing?

I enjoyed helping others, whether it was through volunteering at nursing homes or providing free tutoring to fellow students.

What college do you plan to attend and why?

I am attending the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). In addition to having rigorous academics, Caltech also offers many opportunities in cutting edge scientific and technological research. Because I want to become a medical researcher in anti-cancer research, this is perfect for me.

What do you see yourself doing 10 years from now?

Ten years from now, I will have finished my bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. I will have gone far down the MD/PhD track. I will be closer than ever before to finding a cure for cancer.

– Kelly Evenson