Like them, senior Tarrek Shaban, 17, learned to succeed at whatever he tries.
“Tarrek certainly has so many wide-ranging interests, he can speak to just about anything,” school spokeswoman Carol Ciepluch said about the Neighbor’s inaugural Stellar Student.
As a participant in the Sandy Springs school’s ambassador program, Tarrek spoke to prospective students.
“Tarrek made a huge impression,” Ciepluch said. “Those students are here in large part because in Tarrek they could see what their potential could be.”
The Roswell resident, son of Crabapple Middle School teacher Nancy and media analyst Mo Shaban, credits his parents with helping him realize his potential.
“Mom and Dad would always help me and support me. They always taught me to look at the next level,” Tarrek said. “Like Dad would say, ‘You won [at the] state [level]. What about national?’”
Tarrek may have clinched the national title, had there been one, after winning first place in the 2012 Georgia Educational Technology Fair’s 11th- and 12th- grade hardware category in March.
“I learned everything from carpentry to welding, wiring and soldering,” he said about building a 40-inch touch-screen computer running on the upcoming Windows 8, to which he has access as a Microsoft consultant.
Tarrek also consults for Alpharetta-based information technology consulting firm Illuminate360 yet holds onto his first job as a bagger and cashier at a Publix supermarket in Roswell.
“I still do it because it’s nice to be able to have control over what you save for college,” he said.
College for Tarrek may be Emory University, Georgia Tech or another school, but if Tarrek has not yet decided on a destination, he has narrowed the field.
“I want to major in biochemical engineering, electrical engineering, chemistry or biochemistry, so I have a good foundation to go into either medicine or law,” he said.
Either way, Tarrek’s transcripts will include a 4.0 or higher GPA, awards, internships, club presidencies and playing a sport that, perhaps, balances the swirl of activity around him.
“I was on the golf team last year,” Tarrek said. “Golf is very peaceful. It’s scary peaceful.”
He admitted golf is not his strong suit, but it invokes the same feeling as his Northside Hospital internship or his latest mock trial victory.
“I love it,” Tarrek said. “It’s fun.”