2020 Outstanding Asian American Students in Dane County High Schools
From The Capital City Hues' Row of Excellence
Jazmyn Babler has had her designs on a higher education career during her Middleton High days. Jazmyn has
been active with Future Business Leaders of America and took third at regionals as well as at state in graphic
design. She has also been the vice-president of the fashion club and co-captain of the varsity ski team. Jazmyn was
active with the Middle East & Asian Student Union. In her free time, Jazmyn has been a volunteer ski instructor for
Black Hawk Ski School and painted a mural for Paradigm Software Company in Middleton. This fall, Jazmyn will be
attending the Rhode Island School of Design.
Jesse Castellanos-Martinez has been in full control of the academic ball during his career at Middleton
High. Jesse competed on the soccer team and received a varsity letter. He also became engaged in the
community through Key Club. The Optimists named him Student of the Month. In his free time, Jesse has
been involved at St. Thomas Aquinas Church and held down a part-time job at the Hubbard Avenue Diner.
He has been an assistant basketball coach for the YMCA and enjoys babysitting for family and friends.
An AP Scholar with Distinction, Ahyun Chung has proven that she will achieve no matter where
she is. Ahyun began her high school career in the Seattle area where she performed with the
Bishop Blanchet and Garfield High orchestras and also competed on the Bishop Blanchet,
Garfield and now Middleton swim teams and received the captain’s award from the Middleton
team. Ahyun has also been active with the Middleton Envirothon Club through which she took
1st place in the state Soil & Land Use competition in 2018 and 2019. She was also active with
the school’s Ecology Club and the Gardening Club. Ahyun continued to protect the environment
out in the community, helping to build a new trail segment for the Ice Age Trail Alliance and
helped out with the Wisconsin Lakeshore Nature Preserve. She has also helped with Brat Fest
in Madison as well as the Loyal Heights Community Center, St. Martin de Porres Shelter, the
Seattle Lake City Food Bank and the BBHS Brave Venture Gala in Seattle. Ahyun was involved
with the Dane County School Consortium Youth Apprenticeship Program focusing on
biotechnology from which she received an award. Ahyun also received awards for AP and
Project Lead the Way Student Achievement in Engineering.
A National Honor Society member, Hannah Ernst has had a big heart as she strives for
academic excellence at Middleton High. Hannah has been involved in global outreach, Key Club,
Interact Club and link crew. She competed on the soccer team and was involved in the school’s
theater program. In her free time, Hannah worked in an Appalachia service project, staffed
Domestic Abuse Intervention Service’s Taste of Madison booth and volunteered with Meals on
Wheels. Hannah has been on the honor roll and is headed to UW-Madison to study business.
Noell Jellison has been an academic star at Middleton High as she made great
strides for a collegiate career. Noell was the captain of the varsity track & field team.
She honed her leadership skills on the student council. Noell was a member of the
Infinity Martial Arts Team who were junior world gold medalist winners. Noell made an
appearance in the movie Logan. Noell will be competing in track & field this fall at
Hamline University.
A National Honor Society member, Mia Kim has spoken her academic excellence at Middleton High.
Mia has led the school’s forensics team, competes in congressional debate and radio broadcasting
and is a two-time octofinalist at the state debate tournament. Mia competes in varsity tennis, taking
third place in two singles at the Big 8 tournament. She has also been active with Future Business
Leaders of America, earning fourth place in publication design at its national leadership conference.
Mia was also involved in Sexuality and Gender Equity Club. In herr free time, Mia enjoys doing design
work for Blackhawk Church and local businesses. She also does Spanish tutoring. Mia’s excellence
has earned her two gold, keys, three silver keys and seven honorable mentions in the Scholastic Art
and Writing Competition. Did we mention that Mia sits on the honor roll?
Eric Lee has hit the perfect pitch of academic excellence at Middleton High. Eric has performed with the school’
s philomusica and symphony orchestras as well as with the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra and the
Madison Area Youth Chamber Orchestra and participated in the WSMA summer music clinic. Eric competed in
state solo and ensemble and was a member of the state honors orchestra. Eric is also an avid swimmer,
competing on the swim team for three years and lifeguarding over the summer. He is a certified water safety
instructor. Eric will be double-majoring in violin performance and pre-med/pharmaceuticals at UW-Madison.
A National Merit Scholar Finalist and National Honor Society member, Annie Ma has shown
leadership with a flair at Middleton High. Annie is a founder and officer for the Middle Eastern
& Asian Student Union, president of Fashion Club and lead costume designer for the school
theater. In her free time, Annie was a costumes intern for Madison Ballet and Madison Opera.
She was a student artist for the arts and literature exhibition Lab 3. Annie also loves
volunteering at Jefferson Senior Living. Annie’s excellence has earned her second place
Congressional Art Award and a silver key and honorable mention from Scholastic Art Awards.
Annie’s career in higher education will be fueled by an Andy Grove Scholarship for Intel
Employee’s Children and an Asian Talent Scholarship from the Madison College of Fine Arts.
Ha Nguyen has enjoyed the academic way at Middleton High. She has enjoyed her
teachers and has been active in sports and art design. Ha has enjoyed volunteering at
an elementary school and loves giving presentations about her native country and
Hong Nguyen has approached academic excellence at Middleton High with an international flair. Hong has
made many international friends who have taught her their languages. She now knows over three languages.
Hong also performed in a musical concert and volunteered at an elementary school. The next stage in Hong’s
academic career will be at Madison College where she will improve her English before moving on to UW-
Madison or another four-year school.
Archer Parkin has made a huge academic splash at Middleton High, perched on the honor roll with a
3.94 GPA. Archer has taken intermediate geometry and algebra, pre-calculus I and II and physics. He
has also taken AP human geography, chemistry, physics II and calculus AB. Archer competed on the
track & field team, but has made his mark on the varsity boys swim team. He took all-state honors for
two years and holds the state record for 200 freestyle relay. He was also named an All-American in
the 200 freestyle relay the past two years. The Middleton team has been state Division 1 runner up the
past two years. Archer can be found during his free time giving lessons to young swimmers and
volunteering with Swim Club-hosted meets. Archer’s excellence earned him a MHS Standard Imaging
A National Merit Scholarship winner, Meghna Datta has exuded leadership and academic excellence at
Middleton High. Meghna is president and founder of Girl Up, president of the National Honor Society, captain
of the speech & debate team, president of the current events club and a founding member of the student
senate. In her free time, Meghna has enjoyed performing Indian classical dance and with the Wisconsin
Youth Symphony Orchestra. She also won soloist awards at the state solo & ensemble competition. She has
also found the time to be the youth newsletter editor for the Hindu Temple of Wisconsin. An AP Scholar with
Distinction, Meghna is a Presidential Scholar candidate and received a tuition remission scholarship from
UW-Madison for music.
A National Honor Society member, Jessica Kim has been a competitor inside and outside the classroom.
Jessica competed on the swim team and the forensics team and placed second at the state forensics
tournament in oral interpretation of literature. Jessica also got involved in theater, developed her leadership skills
on the student council and worked for a healthier world on the envirothon team and Ecology Club. Jessica
helped organize the school blood drive, was a Middleton Sustainability Committee representative, represented
on a Dane County food council and served in a youth governance program. Jessica also squeezed in time to
work as a Swim West swimming instructor and volunteered at UW Children’s Hospital and the Middleton Public
Library. Jessica’s excellence has earned her an AP Scholar with Distinction recognition and is a gold finalist  for
the Scholastic Arts and Writing contest.
Alexander Bajoon has explored a lot of facets of high school life while establishing a solid academic
foundation at Verona High. Alexander performed in high school musicals, Shakespeare performances and
performed vocal jazz. He competed in track & field and was active in Red Cross Club, student council, Gender
Sexuality Alliance, peer court, and restorative justice. Alexander has been active in the Internet video game
world serving as a community helper and player moderator for Janex online videos. Alexander is an alumni of
Badger Boys State, participated in Stanford Intensive Law and Trial and volunteered with the Verona Police
Department through the Verona Explorer Post. Alexander is graduating cum laude, received a dean
scholarship and will be studying neurosciences and civic engagement at Cornell University where he also
hopes to attend medical school.
A National Honor Society member, Ragini Bora has been in perfect academic form during her Verona
High career. Ragini competed in varsity tennis. She exhibits a lot of care for students and community
as the founder and president of Red Cross Club, the first in the state. Ragini also mentored students
at Sugar Creek Elementary School and did community service through Interact Club. Ragini has
shown an interest in the health field through her volunteerism at St. Mary’s Hospital, Agrace Hospice
and the Alzheimer’s Association. She also volunteered at Horizon Elementary’s summer school and
at Ratneshwari Elementary School in Assam, India. In her free time, Ragini has devoted herself to the
study of Indian Classical Dance, passing Kathak dance, levels 1-3, with distinction and certified for
levels 1-3, the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in London, England. Ragini was named a
National Merit Scholar and AP Scholar with Distinction and earned a Sentry Insurance National Merit
Scholarship. She is a Distinguished Young Woman of Dane County and was named an Outstanding
Young Person by the Urban League and Rotary Club Student of the Month. Ragini was a round three
finalist in the New York Times Editorial Contest and received the President’s Volunteer Service
Award. Ragini will use Kemper Knapp and William Vilas scholarships to attend UW-Madison this fall.
A National Honor Society member, Gail Macapugay has immersed herself in STEM activities during her
Verona High career. Gail was president of the Sea Perch Robotics Club and active with Science Club and
WISE, Women in Science and Engineering Club. Gail has also been a part of Interact Club and president of
PLANT, Peers Learning and Teaching. Gail earned her silver cord for volunteering at places like SSM Health
where she was a lead volunteer and the Badger Prairie Needs Network. She is a swim instructor at the YMCA
and a server at mass in her church. Gail is graduating magna cum laude and received a principal’s award.
She is headed to UW-Madison to study neurobiology before attending a medical school.
Hailey Sao set a course for higher education during her Verona High career. Hailey was involved in
College Club and participated in food drives with Future Farmers of America for three years. She
also competed in lacrosse. During her junior year, Hailey volunteered with the Heartland Farm
Sanctuary. Hailey will use a school scholarship to study for a career in nursing at Madison College.
Graduating magna cum laude, Vinauv Uday has hit the right academic notes at Verona
High on his way to a solid collegiate education. Vinauv performed with the school
orchestra all four years. He’s been active in Science Club, Spanish Club, French Club,
Red Cross Club and Interact Club and has performed many hours of community
service through them. Vinauv got a great start on his college career by taking AP
calculus AB, biology, language and composition and human geography. He has
enjoyed volunteering at the Verona Public Library and has helped out with the school’s
food and blood drives. Vinauv was named an Urban League Outstanding Young
Person, and was prom royalty. Vinauv will be enrolled at UW-Madison this fall.
A National Honor Society member, Rin Ujikawa has been focused on the needs of others while also staying
focused on academic achievement at Verona High. Through the youth apprenticeship program, Rin received
CNA work experience and took two health-related courses for credit. Rin has been exhibiting her leadership
skills on the student council and received her silver cord for over 200 hours of community service. During her
spare time, Rin has volunteered with the Verona Public Library’s summer reading program, St. Mary’s
Hospital and the Badger Prairie Needs Network and their food pantry. Rin’s excellence earned her an Urban
League Outstanding Young Person recognition and also earned a certificate of recognition at Rotary’s ethics
symposium. She is graduating cum laude and will use the Earl Blizzard Scholarship to attend UW-Madison to
earn a nursing degree.
A National Honor Society member, Koby Vongmoukda added an artist’s touch to his academic
achievements at Verona High. Koby immersed himself in art department activities and got
multiple pieces of his art work displayed. During his free time, he would sometimes volunteer in
community trash pick-up projects. Koby is going to take a breather before starting his higher
education career at Madison College in 2020.
Ilya Webster has a love of creatures large and small to go along with her love for
academic excellence at Verona High. Ilya was a member of Future Farmers of
America during her sophomore year. In her free time, she helps create blankets
for Elizabeth House and make cookies for firefighters. Ilya also works at Monk’s
Bar & Grill as a hostess. Ilya was diagnosed with AMC (leukemia) in 2013 and
her illness was covered on several news shows. Ilya will study to be a
veterinarian technician this fall and hopes to one day own her own horse.
Graduating magna cum laude, George Yan has been competitive in all phases of his Verona High career. George
competed in cross-country and track & field as well as on the math team. George is possibly blending his experience
in Science Club and Art Club into a future career. He also served on the student youth court and got involved through
Interact Club. George earned a cross-country scholar award and will be studying civil engineering at UW-Madison
this fall.
Graduating magna cum laude, David Yi has had great designs on a collegiate career since he entered
Verona High. David has been involved in the Prosthetic Hand Club, an offshoot of the Engineering
Club that creates prosthetic hands for people who need them. David has gotten a great start on his
collegiate career with courses in calculus AB and BS and AP courses in statistics, physics, literature,
language and composition and world. In his free time, David has volunteered with the Salvation Army
and Centro Hispano and has helped people with gardening and cleaning. David has been named an
AP Scholar and will be studying architecture at Washington University in St. Louis this fall.
A Member of the National Spanish Honor Society, Kaitlyn Wilhelms has made an academic splash at
Waunakee High. A three-time MVP and team captain of the Waunakee girls swimming team, Kaitlyn holds five
school records and qualified for the state swimming tournament all four years. She also led the team to four
North Badger Conference titles. Kaitlyn has shown her commitment to her school community through Justice
League, Pay It Forward and peer tutoring. Kaitlyn has also been a lifeguard and gives swimming lessons at the
school’s pool. In her free time, Kaitlyn has performed with the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra for the
past seven years, performing at venues from Olbrich Gardens and the Overture Center locally to halls in Italy
and Peru. Kaitlyn’s excellence has earned her Urban League Outstanding Young Person and Badger
Conference Top Scholar distinctions. She earned a Waunakee High Life Science Award and was all state
honorable mention.