Camelback Has Two National Merit Scholarship Corporation Commended Scholars

Posted by Community Relations on 12/17/2015

Camelback has two National Merit Scholarship Corporation Commended Scholars- Helena Silva Nichols and Madeline “Maddie” Souder.

Nichols is also a National Hispanic Recognition Scholar and a Hispanic Heritage Gold Youth Award winner in Innovation and Technology. She was recently notified of her selection as a QuestBridge Match Scholar to Yale University. She is completing her third year as a Barrow Neurological Institute neuro-oncology intern researching glioblastoma multiforme, working six hours a day, while maintaining a 4.894 weighted grade point average.

Yale is at the top of her list, but she is still waiting to hear back from Stanford and MIT in the spring. Nichols, who attended Bioscience High School the past three years, wants to major in neuroscience or cognitive science with hopes of becoming a Ph. D. in that field She “aspires to become a neuroscientist in order to help elucidate a few of the mysteries surrounding our understanding of the brain and its disorders.” In November, she attended the Society for Neuro-Oncology 20th Annual Scientific meeting in San Antonio, presenting research to medical and science experts.

Her counselor at Bioscience, Terry Haggerty said, “"Helena houses a graduate-level mind in the body of a 17-year old…she has fallen deeply in love with neuroscience.”

She is the daughter of Monica Nichols, a Spanish teacher at Bioscience High School.

Senior Madeline Souder will be in the first graduating class of the Camelback Montessori Prep. She is the president and co-founder of Spartan Paws, in which students work with Service Dogs in Training to assist people with disabilities, including Camelback Exceptional Students classrooms. She also trains service dogs for Lifeline Assistance. She is in National Honors Society, Montessori Club, and the founder of an editing program that she is working to expand within Camelback. The list of prospective universities she is considering is long and prestigious, including University of Rochester, Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Brown, Columbia and Vanderbilt. Souder will major in neuroscience, and her career ambition is to become a neurologist.

Her counselor says “Maddie embraces service both inside and outside of the classroom. She readily took on the 24/7 commitment to be a service dog trainer, changing her life and Camelback’s campus forever.”