Gig Harbor Now is posting profiles of each of the 25 Students of Distinction being honored by the Greater Gig Harbor Foundation. The students will be honored during a banquet from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, May 18, 2022, at Ocean5, 5268 Point Fosdick Dr.
Student: Purab Saini
School: Gig Harbor High School
Category: Academic Achievement
Purab Saini’s enthusiasm for learning is matched only by the satisfaction he gets from serving his community.
He has maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout his high school career including as a Running Start student and a member of the National Honor Society. He also is fluent in several languages including Hindi, Gujarati and Spanish.
Purab volunteers with Food Backpacks 4 Kids, the Pierce County library and FISH Food Bank where he helps process orders and checks inventory.
“Volunteering has provided me with a sense of satisfaction and made me humbler,” he said. “Helping at the food bank during COVID taught me a really valuable lesson — it doesn’t cost a single penny to give back to the community, but to the organization we help, it’s priceless.”
Another “gift” of the pandemic was learning to play Dungeons & Dragons with friends on Zoom.
“I had so much fun hanging out virtually with my friends and loved the storytelling, combat and magical aspects of the game,” he said. Now he volunteers as a tutor at a local middle school in their D&D club.
Still another meaningful experience has been teaching swimming classes at the YMCA. He got that job because his mother urged him to not give up in his job search.
“Dealing with disappointment and changing my perspective was a big challenge for me,” he said. “But when you realize that something like job hunting can teach you to look for opportunities and not failures, it changes your outlook.”
Learning to design and 3D print a phone holder whetted his appetite to study computer engineering in college, either at UW or Florida State.
“It doesn’t rain as much in Florida,” he said with a smile.
The best thing about GHHS has been the “unequivocal support and guidance from my teachers. I have learned so many new things over the last four years — weight training, art appreciation, world history, chemistry, engineering design, Spanish language and so forth. I wouldn’t have enjoyed the academic piece if it wasn’t for the mentorship and passion that the teachers brought to these lessons.”
His teachers have recognized Purab’s passion for learning.
“From the first moment of meeting with Purab over the years, I was impressed with his quiet determination, honesty and poise,” said Jessica Samsen, online coordinator for the Global Virtual Academy. “He has the integrity, charity and life experiences that will serve him (and others) well in the years to come.”
Purab’s advice to younger students is to be happy with yourself.
“Ask questions. Use the time wisely to learn life skills like how to write a check or mail a letter. Don’t worry about making mistakes. These are opportunities for you to grow. And don’t compare yourself to others. You are unique, just like everyone else is unique.”
Parent: Shital Saini
GPA: 4.0 (Class ranking: 1)
Activities/achievements: Running Start; National Honor Society; Swim instructor/lifeguard at the YMCA; leads after-school activity club at Goodman MS; Multilingual; Volunteers at several non-profits.
Favorite teacher: Ms. Patterson – 8th grade math at Goodman MS.
We can’t do it without you. Public service news requires community support.
Sign up now for the Gig Harbor Now weekly newsflash to stay abreast of everything that’s happened in the past seven days.