Every year, students with outstanding academic records are nominated to represent the Arcadia High School graduating class as Salutatorians. This year, Arcadia High had 32 seniors, each with a minimum grade point average of 3.95.
According to AHS principal David Vannasdall, from this truly impressive group of 32, a selection committee made up of ten AHS faculty members, administrators, and students had to choose one student to represent the senior class as its top scholar. This person is named as Valedictorian for the Class of 2009 and the student selected this year is senior Derek Ouyang.
Ouyang has taken 27 semesters of honors and Advanced Placement courses and was named a National Advanced Placement Scholar after earning 4s or 5s (5 being the highest) on eight Advanced Placement Examinations by the end of his junior year.
While taking an incredibly rigorous schedule, Ouyang earned a perfect 4.0 grade point average with just a single grade of “A minus” on his transcript. He was named a National Merit Finalist after scoring a perfect 240 on the PSAT according to Vannasdall.
Ouyang has been involved in numerous academic teams and has distinguished himself by winning awards for himself and Arcadia High School in Mathematics, Science, and English. He is also a member of the distinguished Senior Men and Women service group at Arcadia High.
Ouyang was born in Alhambra in 1992 and at an early age developed a love for art, music, and academics. In middle school he was named student of the year and drum major of the school band. While keeping busy with the academic schedule that has earned him the valedictorian honor, Ouyang has been involved in the AHS percussion program and is currently Section Leader of the World Class Varsity Percussion Ensemble, a group of 27 percussionists which he lead to Dayton, Ohio for the WGI National Championships.
In his spare time, Ouyang loves to create music and films and he plans to pursue mechanical engineering in college. Ouyang will be a featured speaker at the Arcadia High School commencement ceremony on Friday, June 12, at Santa Anita Race Track.