Faith Karanja, a Broadneck High School senior, has been named a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist. One of only five semifinalists from public schools in Anne Arundel County, Karanja was selected based on high performance on the 2021 Preliminary SAT and National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. Finalists will be named in February.
Karanja’s favorite classes are statistics and sciences, and she has taken Advanced Placement courses in every academic department.
“I’ve really enjoyed my experience at Broadneck,” Karanja said. “My school has lots of options for academic classes and clubs, and all of my teachers have been very supportive, and they’re accessible when I need assistance.”
She plans to stay local for college, however, she will follow a pre-med biology track with the hopes of being a cardiologist one day. Karanja has a strong desire to help people. Her community service includes working at the Christian Assistance Program food distribution to neighbors in need, and with Happy Helpers for the Homeless in sharing food, clothes and toys.
Karanja credits her parents for instilling in her the importance of education and the value of supporting others.
“Ever since I can remember, my parents taught us the importance of education,” added Karanja, whose father is a business owner and mother is a physician’s assistant. “They worked really hard to get into higher education and to get where they are today.”
Her parents were born in Kenya. The family moved to Arnold for the schools in 2007 from Prince George’s County.
Broadneck guidance counselor Luke Wilhelm called Karanja “a uniquely talented, passionate and curious student.”
“Faith has the qualities of a life-long learner: whenever she is presented with something unfamiliar, she excitedly researches the topic to deepen her understanding and see how it connects to other topics she is interested in,” Wilhelm said. “This inquisitive nature drives her academic success. She hopes to use these abilities to benefit others in the future as a physician. Her brilliance and compassion, as well as her humble willingness to constantly learn and be taught, will make her an outstanding physician in the future.”
In addition to the National Merit Scholarship semifinalist recognition, Karanja has been named a College Board National African American Recognition Program 2022-2023 Scholar and she is a member of the National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society and National Math Honors Society. She has participated in the U.S. Army Education Outreach Program for five years, and this summer was part of Astro Research with the U.S. Naval Academy physics department where she learned how to use the Hopper Hall 20-inch telescope to observe stars and asteroids and use software to analyze their orbits.
She is a member of Broadneck High School’s UNICEF Club, Key Club and student government. She is a past member of the cross country and field hockey teams. She plays the keyboard and saxophone, and enjoys painting, pottery and crochet.
She is the youngest child of Daniel and Lucy Karanja.
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