Senior of the Month (January) – Ali Ahmed


Ali Ahmed '22

Ali Ahmed ’22 at the Golden Gate Bridge on a family vacation to tour the West Coast in December 2021.

Aspiring astronomer, Quiz Bowl player, club president, news editor, and EHS STEM Academy student Ali Ahmed’ 22 has been selected as January’s Student of the Month.

Since the day he received a telescope as a gift at age seven, Ahmed has held a passion for astronomy and astrophotography. He recounts that looking at the night sky through his telescope and “witnessing photons that have traveled for thousands of years ending their interstellar journey at the back of my own retina” captivates him. To further pursue this passion, as well as his wider interest in science, Ahmed attended the New Jersey’s Governor School of Sciences (NJGSS), where he took classes in molecular orbital theory, astronomy and special relativity.

“One of the greatest accomplishments of my life was my selection as Valedictorian of the NJGSS”,  he said. “Giving a speech to 60 of the brightest minds of New Jersey was the honor of a lifetime.” As a result of his passion for astronomy, Ahmed is currently building a telescope for his STEM Capstone project.

While an exceptional student and avid astronomer, Ahmed also involves himself in several school clubs. As the co-president for the EHS Quiz Bowl team, he helped lead and develop the club online at the peak of the pandemic, and continues to nurture the Quiz Bowl community at the school. He is a member of EHS Quiz Bowl’s A Team, which played at the High School National Championship Tournament last year, placing 137th in the nation.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
  • A photograph of Comet C/2020 F3 NEOWISE, a long-period comet that became visible from New Jersey in late 2020. Here, you can see a close-up of the nucleus and cometary coma

  • A photograph of Mars near opposition. Visible is the Tharsis Rise towards the north of the planet and its Southern Ice Cap (the small white spot towards the south)

  • A photograph of Saturn during its closest approach to Earth (opposition). Here, you can see the major gap between Saturn’s rings (the Huygens gap) as well as Saturn’s cloud bands.

  • Photograph of a 3rd day moon. The terminator line (the line between night and dark) casts shadows upon craters and lunar maria, making them prominent.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right

Ahmed is also the president of Science National Honors Society, and serves as editor for the News section of The Eagle’s Eye. He is a member of EHS’s Science Olympiad team, for which he has competed in the astronomy-based event since 10th grade. Over the course of his high school experience, Ahmed has learned to cherish every opportunity he finds; in his words, “each moment is fleeting, and I’m not getting these precious seconds back, so I learned that I needed to make the most of it.”

As Ahmed departs from EHS, he would like to thank Ms. Diane Frey, Ms. Kruti Singh, and Dr. Gene Nasser for guiding him like mentors and making him a better thinker and leader. 

Looking to his future beyond high school, Ahmed hopes to involve himself in designing space probes at NASA, or exploring the relatively new field of quantum computing. However, he also hopes to continue his pursuit of various unique interests in college.

Each moment is fleeting, and I’m not getting these precious seconds back, so I learned that I needed to make the most of it.

— Ali Ahmed’ 22

Ahmed says that his experiences have matured him as a student and a young adult. A key aspect of his personality manifests itself in a quote by the Greek philosopher Diogenes of Sinope: “I am a citizen of the world.” Ahmed’s cosmopolitan desire to help others, irrespective of their identity, motivates him to pursue his passions and give back to his community. In this spirit, he leaves advice for the younger students of Edison High School in three main points.

First, that “it’s okay to not know what you are doing” at times. Accepting this fact and seeking help from others when needed is key to eventual success.

Next, he believes that one must “learn and work to improve [oneself], not [one’s] grades or superficial titles.”

Finally, Ahmed implores his fellow students to explore interests for the sake of exploration, find their passions, and “ruthlessly pursue them.”