- Student Life
Nhi Phan joined Sage Ridge in 9th grade, and she remembers how welcomed she felt. She had expected to feel like a new student: everyone else would know each other and not be interested in meeting someone new. After town meeting that first day, however, she found herself in a huddle of students at her locker, and by the end of the day, she had already spoken to most of the people in her class. The experience of being embraced by the community has stuck with her since then.
Over the course of her four years at Sage Ridge, Nhi has competed in Debate competitions, served on the Honor Council and Debate board, and managed the girls’ basketball team. Known around school for her provocative artwork, Nhi says that her study of art at Sage Ridge has helped her learn how to express herself. “It’s not just about being good at drawing,” Nhi says. She has learned to experiment, to question herself, and to find meaning in art, and she has learned that there are always new techniques and new ways to improve. At times, she has worried about being too bold, but Mr. Brown has encouraged her by telling her to not hold back. “Mr. Brown’s assignments are designed to inspire,” Nhi explains, “and when my work veers away from what he has assigned, he lets me do what inspires me.”
Nhi wants to study applied human biology in college and is planning to one day become a Physician’s Assistant. Having taught Nhi in Honors Biology, AP Biology, and Human Anatomy and Physiology, Dr. Roth marvels at Nhi’s focus on her goals of studying science in college and attending medical school: “While many may see these as daunting goals, Nhi looks at them as a life-long challenge and as motivation to complete rigorous studies and training to apply her work to benefit patients and the medical community."
Nhi’s advice to younger Scorpions is about getting the most out of the Sage Ridge experience: “Don’t let your pride get in the way,” she says. “Ask for help.” Nhi cites Dr. Sullivan as a teacher who has empowered her and credits Dr. Sullivan for helping her through some of the greater challenges of her upper school career. Nhi also appreciates her peers, as they, too, have played a part in supporting her over the past four years. Nhi’s advice to underclassmen is to embrace your Sage Ridge community of scholars and to lean on them for help: “No one is going to make fun of you. People want to help you - including your peers. Students want their classmates to be successful as well.”