The Eagle’s Gambit

Chess Club is Back at EHS



A new “move” for a newly revitalized EHS Chess Club.

A former club has returned to EHS thanks to the efforts of Sahana Ali ‘23, Brianna Cieslak ‘23, and their advisor Mr. Cory Grillo. Yes, the Chess Club is back. 

The two board members have always possessed passion for chess. Ali, a co-founder of the Chess Club, first picked up her interest at a very young age. She loved to play chess with her family members. Cieslak, the other co-founder, similarly enjoyed playing chess with her younger brother. Cieslak always found herself challenged by the various strategies her brother uses, which in turn helped her grow and become a better player. 

As the deadly virus COVID-19 took the world by storm, Ali and Cieslak were forced to stay inside. Throughout the pandemic, the chess enthusiasts immersed themselves by playing small games of chess. Post-pandemic, they decided to take up the initiative to spread their love for the game throughout EHS. Meticulous planning throughout their junior years of school followed. 

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  • Sahana Ali ’23 and Brianna Cieslak ‘23 create a poster during orientation for the new chess club.

  • Rudra Kumar ’25 and Srinidhi Tammana ’25 focusing on an intense chess match. Parth Gundani ’24 looks on.

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Looking for an advisor, they went to Grillo, their former math teacher. Hearing their passion, Grillo agreed. Now official, the Chess Club of the 2022-2023 school year advertised in the co-curricular fair. Interested students attend their first meeting on June 6th, 2022. 

 “We want to get outside of that mindset of you don’t have to be smart, it’s just like how much you put into it, it’s about the strategy, it’s about what you learn,” said Ali.

Before leaving Edison High School, the club administrators wanted to leave a strong legacy where newer generations of students can improve and learn the arts of chess. They strive to make chess a game for everyone, a game that serves as a method of coping up with stress and difficulties. Grillo aspires to have the next Grand Champion come from EHS.

“I think that the school made a good decision to make a club out of the game. I look forward to playing with my friends and new people in the club and perhaps learning from them.” said Anantha Paravasthu ‘24.

Ali and Cieslak have big goals in mind for the future of chess club. Meetings are held every Thursday.