Rotary Distinguished Student of Service Radhika Iyer, second from right, is joined by, from left, LAHS teacher Kathleen Boerigter and parents Rashia and Srinivas Iyer. Photo by Kurt Schoenberg
Los Alamos High School junior Radhika Iyer was honored recently by the Rotary Club of Los Alamos as a Distinguished Student of Service. Iyer is the daughter of Rashia and Srinivas Iyer.
Each school year, the Rotary Club of Los Alamos selects nine high school juniors to honor as a Distinguished Student of Service. Juniors are recognized in hopes of inspiring their interest in Rotary programs that fall during the summer following junior year. Students are nominated by their teachers and chosen on the basis of their academic achievement, extra-curricular activities, and, in particular, their service to the community.
Iyer has made service part of her life by being involved in many community services, activities, and athletics. With particular interests in math and science, Iyer serves on the Math Club Admissions Committee, which is working toward becoming a chapter of the National Math Honors Society, and has participated in science bowls in 2014 and 2016. Iyer is also is a Teen Leader of Café Scientifique. She was the vice president of her sophomore class, is the treasurer of Key Club, and was an intern at Johns Hopkins last year.
Iyer was a poll worker during the national elections and is a member of the LAHS Hilltalkers Speech and Debate Team. As a swimmer, she participates on the high school junior varsity team and is a member of the Chargers Aquatics swim team.
When asked about the challenges facing today’s youth, Iyer mentioned the “lack of engagement in education.” In a Rotary essay she wrote, “An essential element of service is contributing to and improving the wellbeing of your community. By helping students become more engaged in their education … we are able to promote the overall welfare of our community.”
Iyer has seen the success of this through her participation in Café Scientifique, a club dedicated to offering scientific knowledge to students in Los Alamos at monthly events, and in Key Club through a program focused on addressing childhood literacy that promotes reading and writing through interactive learning.
Iyer was joined at the luncheon by her parents and by LAHS science teacher Kathleen Boerigter who she named as her most influential teacher.