A member of Gulliver's first boys' swimming state championship team and one of 500 students nationwide selected to The Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders, Richard Almagro '18 is what one might call an ideal student-athlete – excellent in the classroom, a total team player and a strong competitor. Read on to learn more about Richard's summer, his future aspirations and more.
Q: This summer you traveled to Massachusetts to attend The Congress of Future Science and Technology Leaders – an honors-only program for high school students who want to enter science or technology fields. What did The Congress entail, and what was your favorite part?
A: There were some group activities with the delegates and speakers but mainly the Congress consisted of various interesting presentations explaining futuristic topics. My favorite part of the trip was being able to interact with so many people with the same goal I have, and being able to listen to some of the most prestigious scientists and engineers in the world.
Q: How will you use what you learned at the Congress at Gulliver this year?
A: I will use the attitude that was embraced at the conference, which was to be positive and enthusiastic about school and about learning.
Q: If you had to pick two major takeaways from the Congress, what would they be?
A: Two presentations really impressed me. One presentation was about new technology in batteries to make them last longer and be recyclable. The other presentation that comes to mind is one that talked about college because it helped me get a better idea of how to get accepted into my dream colleges.
Q: What are your dream schools?
A: I am thinking about Georgia Tech, University of Miami, Northwestern University, or Washington University at St. Louis. But, my dream school is MIT. I want to major in software engineering.
Q: Who are your mentors? Who do you look up to?
A: My teammates are my mentors in swimming; they help me out every practice. My mentor outside of school is my cousin. He has been a role model to me because he is outgoing, always got good grades and has taught me how to study well. I aspire to be like my cousin one day.
Q: What's your favorite thing about being on the swim team?
A: My favorite thing about being on the swim team is how swimming makes me a better person with discipline, working hard and building strong relationships with my teammates.
Q: Do you have a favorite swim team moment?
A: My favorite moment was at a meet at Gainesville where I destroyed my best time in the mile by a minute, and my coach and my teammates congratulated me. It was a great experience because I finally felt that the hard work at practice paid off.
Richard was also recognized recently by The National Society of High School Scholars, earning him a lifetime membership to the Society, which recognizes top scholars who have demonstrated outstanding leadership, scholarship and community commitment.