Whether they know her personally or not, everyone at East Wake High School knows Amarachi Achonu’s voice.
As president of the East Wake Student Council, it is Achonu’s duty to co-anchor the morning announcements.
“It’s interesting to go up to the office every morning – there’s always something going on up there,” she said before heading that way Thursday. “I never realized how much you’d hear back about, ‘You’re too slow,’ or, ‘You read too loud.’ And there’s no messing up the Pledge (of Allegiance). That’s a big no-no.”
Her on-air career at the school concludes this week, as she is set to graduate with valedictorian honors from the East Wake School of Engineering Systems.
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Achonu, whose GPA is 5.035, plans to continue her education majoring in biomedical engineering at Duke University. She expects her experience in the former small school for engineering at East Wake will come in handy in the near future.
“I was interested in engineering because math is my favorite subject,” said Achonu, the daughter of Ebele Saint Louis and Jean Saint Louis of Raleigh. “I’m intrigued by math and the logic behind it and the problem solving. I thought I could use math in the real world and solve problems in real-world situations.”
There are some things Achonu says few people know about her, like how she is one of seven members of her household with four siblings. She is also among the first generation of her Nigerian family in America.
At East Wake, Achonu has done plenty beyond serving as Student Council chief. She’s editor-in-chief of the yearbook, and a member of the National Honor Society, Science Club, Future Business Leaders of America, and the track and field team. She’s also active in her youth group at First Baptist Church, Raleigh.
“I enjoy social media and TV, occasionally, but usually I don’t get free time,” Achonu said. “I’ll normally be volunteering at church or singing at home, annoying my family.”
Her key to staying afloat is writing everything down – making a lot of lists and keeping a notebook.
Her words of wisdom: don’t be afraid to go after your interests, and give them everything you’ve got.
“There’s no substitute for hard work and it may not always be easy, but it will be worth it despite the environment that you are around,” Achonu said.