David Andrade, Farewell and Thank you

In Miami High, we have a large pool of excellent students, and one such individual has carved a special place for himself in Miami High history. And that someone is senior David Andrade, a Gates Scholarship winner, who is off to Harvard University.

“I want to be remembered for the times I helped people, the amount of lives I impacted whether it was as minor as holding the door for someone or as major as helping them with ACT prep and boosting their score.”

College Admissions

   Besides Harvard, David has been accepted to many notable schools such as: Yale, Brown, Duke, Caltech and Georgia Tech to name a few. However, he looked very carefully and deliberately before what school he would attend for the next four years.

In his decision-making process, David considered, on the positive side, whether the school had an expanding engineering program, school spirit/activities, and research opportunities in his field. On the negative side he was on guard against elitism, boring surroundings, and cut-throat environments.

After visiting many of the schools that accepted him including Harvard, Yale, Caltech and Brown, “his gut feeling” was Harvard. “In other institutions, I didn’t feel like that.” At Harvard he was impressed by how they were improving their STEM fields, and he felt an atmosphere and spirit like Miami High. “It felt like home,” he said.

David’s Gates scholarship, which covers everything David will need to have a very fulfilling and enjoyable experience at Harvard, is worth almost $80,000 per year.


School success

David is best known for being Mu Alpha Theta’s President and his perfect score of 36 on the ACT, after previously taking the test and receiving a 31. People might commonly categorize David as an overachiever and a person that doesn’t have to study and gets A’s without breaking a sweat.

However, he was not always at this level of academic excellence, dating back to middle school. In fact, before his sophomore year, he did not take AP or dual enrollment courses mostly because of the self-doubt he was carrying with himself.

It was not until a good friend of his, Emmanuel Garit, signed him up for AP Biology with Dr. Yoham, when David fell in love with biology and began to challenge himself by taking more advanced classes during his final two years in high school.

His biggest academic achievement would have to be the AP Biology award he earned at the end of his sophomore year, the catalyst that set him on his quest to challenge himself. Another big achievement is the Questbridge Scholarship he won to Yale University, which he did not accept but acknowledges how it reassured him that he belonged in our nation’s top schools.

Through all his years in high school, Andrade’s unweighted GPA has always been 4.0; weighted GPA is 4.967, mostly derived from never receiving a B in any class.

David’s biggest academic regrets are: not challenging himself in 9th and 10th grade years by not taking more advanced classes, not broadening his horizons with the addition of more classes, and hoping to be more involved in humanities, politics, psychology and other social sciences.


Extra-curricular activities

His favorite high school memory was forging the Honor Alliance between Mu Alpha Theta, Science Honor Society, English Honor Society, Historical Honor Society and the Law and Leadership Society.

Homecoming this year was another favorite memory. Mu Alpha Theta’s theme was the Grinch and the Three Little Pigs. The little things that really touched David and made it an unforgettable experience were: the float being constructed right next to his house; doing something that was greater than himself and the individuals involved; and feeling like a family during the process which included: painting the props, buying the materials for the float, learning skit/dance part with friends.


Test Wiz

Many people might be wondering what went into the preparation process of obtaining his perfect ACT score of 36? It’s quite simple. He used a program called ACT Kaplan online which was where he did 800 math problems and 400 English, after he received a waiver from CAP advisor Ms. Puentes. Another question might be how did his SAT score compare? While a score of 1360 on the SAT is a very good score, David preferred the ACT because it was more straightforward and to the point while, the SAT was more dependent on comprehension.


 Future Plans

   Being so well-rounded as a student, David excels in any subject area. However, he prefers to work more in the science and mathematics fields. His major of choice at Harvard will be bio-engineering, in the medical field. It’s designing artificial organs and Prosthetics and making these materials more cost effective and widespread around the globe.

David has plans well beyond his next four years at Harvard, He stated, “I will do four years working in the industry with other engineers to improve systems used in the medical field or in a research lab improving upon these materials.” After a three-year break from school, he would return to college and work to obtain his master’s and Ph.D., while already working to improve his overall knowledge and wage in his field of choice.

   Andrade has a few goals, outside of academics while at college. “I really want to strengthen my political background, being more of an informed citizen and helping the community,” he said. He also wants to learn to play trombone or trumpet to “connect more with my friends and just have fun while doing it.”


Personal Life

   There is more to David Andrade than meets the eye. He’s not just an academic scholar; he’s also an avid sports fan. “I want people to see more than the academic side of me. I have seen more sports documentaries than actual movies,” said David. As a Miami High athlete, he participated on the cross country and bowling teams. This experience was about cooperation and improving each other, the whole team being greater than the sum of its parts and how they can improve on each other’s technique and make them a better team.

David likes playing trivia, playing basketball/football, and exploring new things. He spends a lot of time on Sporcle and watching trivia YouTube videos.

Both of his parents were born in Honduras, but David was born here. Before coming to Miami High, David attended Kensington Park Elementary and Citrus Grove Middle.

Andrade has one sibling, an older brother that lives in the house next to him and his mom. “My brother is thirty, and he’s like a father figure to me.”



Looking Back

Considering where he has been and where he is going, David would like to give his utmost respect and appreciation to science department chairperson Dr. Hueck, AP Biology teacher Dr. Yoham, and Mu Alpha Theta sponsor Ms. Munguia for believing in him and giving him the confidence to keep going strong in academics.

When a notable figure must transition into a new chapter of his life, one question arises: What will he/she be remembered for? David summed it up best when he said, “I want to be remembered for the times I helped people, the amount of lives I impacted whether it was as minor as holding the door for someone or as major as helping them with ACT prep and boosting their score.”


Side Bar


  1. What was the catalyze that set David on his quest to challenge himself?


  1. What college is he going to attend?


  1. What was his score on the ACT?


  1. What is one thing about David he wishes more people would see about him aside from academics?


  1. What are some of David’s favorite hobbies to do in his free time?