Meet Penelope Nicole Gadia

Penelope Nicole Gadia.
Photo by Jan Gadia.

By Joan Frances –

As a senior at Morton Ranch High School, Penelope Gadia has lived her high school experience to the fullest. She has excelled in academics, extracurricular activities and is a respected leader. She also devotes many hours to helping the community. With so many commitments and successes, Penelope is headed for an efficacious future.

Penelope has taken Advanced Placement classes throughout her high school career, and she is currently on target to be the valedictorian of her class. She is president of the National Honor Society, and an officer in the National English Honor Society. She is also a member of the French Honor Society and the French Club.

Penelope has numerous recognitions for her accomplishments. She has received “A” Honor Roll, Science and Mathematics Academic Excellence Award, University Interscholastic League First Division Medalist, LOTE (Language Other than English) Academic Excellence for French, National Academy of Future Scientists and Technologists Award for Excellence and is the recipient of the Outstanding Student Plaque. Penelope’s favorite teacher is Mrs. Mayra Colombani, her AP Chemistry teacher junior year. “That class was the first class that had me working extra hard, but still only barely making an A,” shared Penelope. “Despite that, the environment that Señora set up in the class allowed for collaboration and gave an in-depth perspective in chemistry that always made the class fun. Plus, she would always make us delicious food to reward us for our work!”

In addition to her academic accomplishments, Penelope is a Captain and section leader with the Morton Ranch Band. She is an active participant in the Band Student Leadership Team, where they facilitate the teaching of incoming members and the communication between directors and student members. “Being a leader really allows me to see things from a different perspective. Band, specifically, enables me to explore being a leader to the fullest extent. Whether it be learning collaborative work, patience, the importance of attitude or the power of positivity and tenacity, I find myself growing as a person by being a leader. There’s also the social aspect of it and to be able to teach underclassman makes me feel like I’m giving back to the program that has given me so much.”

Penelope likes to live by the quote “The difference between who you are and who you want to be, is what you do.” “I think this quote has really made me realize that we don’t necessarily ‘discover’ our true selves, but we create who we are and what kind of person we want to be. It’s all about growth and mindset!”

One thing Penelope will treasure about her years at Morton Ranch are the people. “The people, definitely. I’ve been blessed with the most amazing friends and family who have given me endless support since my journey through high school began. They are what made my memories so meaningful, and though I know they’ll continue to be a major part of my life, there’s something off about knowing that I won’t be seeing them on an everyday basis, especially since it’s been a habit for the past four years. I love them endlessly!”

During free time, Penelope generously gives her time volunteering for Mavericks Achieving Volunteer Service, where she has received annual service awards for three consecutive years. She has also helped to raise money for the band volunteering at Galaxy Fireworks. She is exploring university options and will major in biomedical engineering.

Congratulations Penelope on your commitments, academic accomplishments and leadership skills. We look forward to watching you continue to grow as an individual achieving the goals of your dreams.