“How can I combine my passion, knowledge, and skills to make the world a better place?” This is a question Akila constantly asks herself. Akila enjoys hands-on science and computer programming and looks for ways to solve real-world problems using technology. She is a captain for the West Windsor Plainsboro (WWP) North Science Olympiad team and has won several awards at local, state and national Science Olympiad and National History Day competitions. She is the Chief-Editor for curiousSCIENCEwriters and also writes for Youngzine - a current events magazine. As Executive Director of TechGirls, Akila is responsible for curriculum development, to help girls from underserved communities develop an interest in coding. Besides high school work, Akila is also taking Computer Science classes at Princeton University. Akila is a passionate environmentalist, President of WWP North’s Environment Club and a student-member of WWP District Green Team. She runs healthy eating campaigns on National Food Day at the middle and high schools every year. Working closely with school administrators and cafeteria staff, she helps plan healthy menus for school lunches and champions for “Meatless Mondays”. This past summer, as a scholar at NJ Governor’s School of Engineering and Technology, Akila conducted research on Electronic Ornithopter Systems. Her paper was accepted and presented at MIT-IEEE’s Undergraduate Research Technology Conference. The previous summer, her research with Prof. Jay Meegoda at NJIT, to inspect culverts using pixel-based identification of defects from images, was published by ASCE’s Journal of Pipelines. Akila is a Civil Air Patrol cadet and she trains to fly emergency missions. She is also a member of WWP North varsity golf team. Akila dreams to make the world sustainable by tapping into her passion for science and technology. She plans to make her career in engineering as part of MIT’s undergraduate class of 2023.