Nadia Wakil, the 2018 salutatorian at Red Oak High School, hopes to utilize her passion for medicine to help people in her community.
Throughout four years of high school, the life lesson she learned is to put herself first instead of the thoughts and opinions other had.
“I thought I had to be perfect, that I’d be top of my class and I learned that being second is okay,” Wakil admitted.
Wakil was heavily involved in numerous organizations and clubs, holding leadership positions in National Honors Society, student council, basketball, cross country, Health Occupation Students of America, and Hawks Against Destructive Decisions.
Her advice to the class of 2022 is, “Definitely take it seriously but not too seriously. I believe that’s what I did. I feel like if I could go back and do it all over again, I wouldn’t have taken it as seriously. Have fun every once in a while and know that I didn’t have to be perfect. So have fun and make it memorable but also think of the future as well.”
Wakil will attend the University of Texas at Dallas to receive a bachelor’s degree in healthcare studies. She then plans to pursue medical school, complete residency and hopes to specialize in neuroscience.
She is most excited about most about the potential impact she could make on the people in her community.
Wakil said her speech would be more on the entertaining side and focuses on looking into the future. She will share with her classmates that “If you can dream it, you can do it as long as you put in the hard work and are dedicated. My hard work and dedication allowed me so far to get where I am now.”
She said her and Brooke Rennie, the 2018 Red Oak High School valedictorian, have proved that they can balance both fun and study time. This mindset impacted her peers.
Not only did Wakil sacrifice mass amounts of sleep but also felt that she could have spent more time with family and friends. She added there was always stress on her shoulders and wishes she had carried those emotions differently throughout high school.
“The outcome was obviously great, but I think I should have valued other things more other than my grades," Wakil said.
When Wakil decided on her most memorable memory, she recalled a trip to Austin for a cross country meet. She misunderstood the curfew and had ventured out in the halls. She and her friend saw the coaches and figured out they weren’t supposed to be out. They scurried to the first room of the team — and it was a boy’s room. Wakil and her friend made it back to the room without being caught by coach.
“I don’t really regret too much, and I honestly don’t want to do it again. But I want to say accomplish your dreams and change the world," Wakil emphasized.
The Red Oak High School Class of 2018 will graduate June 1 at the University of Texas at Arlington.
Ashley Ford | @aford_news | 469-517-1450