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What Our Alumni Have to Say

Alumni Reflections

"My time at Parrott was characterized by amazing opportunities combined with incredible advising and an iron clad support system. The environment fosters excellence and creativity, encouraging students to explore new opportunities in order to find their passions and pursue them. I graduated after organizing the first Stop Hunger Now drive, as well as The Cinderella Project in addition to playing two sports, competing on the National level for the Science Olympiad team, and providing technical support for three plays. My story is not rare at Parrott. The friends I made there, who are still very close to me, could tell you about their passion for art or dedication to service that was developed and nurtured during their time there. The faculty is invested in the students and the students are motivated. This is how the movers and shakers of the world are created."
Chelsea Viscardi
Parrott Academy, Class of 2009
Yale University, B.S. Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry
Tufts University, M.S. Biomedical Sciences
"Even though I felt like an average student in some of my classes, our counselors and teachers always gave me the confidence to do my best. With this increase in self-confidence I was able to accomplish my goals. Their passion to prepare me for college and life along with the kindness and compassion they showed to me and my entire family definitely contributed to my success in life and making me who I am today." 
Rachael Ruffolo
Parrott Academy, Class of 2009
UNC-CH, NC Teaching Fellow
2nd grade teacher, Wake County Schools
"The best part about APA is its dedicated and professional faculty. Their passion for education stimulates intellectual curiosity and gives students the fundamentals they need to excel at the next level. I felt very well prepared relative to my peers at UNC." 
John Berry, MD
Parrott Academy, Class of 2001
UNC School of Medicine
Harvard Medical School, Cardiothoracic Anesthesia Fellow
"APA's competent and committed faculty ensured I had the foundation for future success. All alumni could point to the academy's excellent academic preparation, but I would like to emphasize what I learned on the playing field. Playing football at Parrott taught me the importance of teamwork, commitment, discipline, and attention to detail. Above all, it taught me to "leave it all on the field," as Coach Rowe used to say. To me, this weekly directive prior to each game meant for each of us to do our all and leave no room for regret once the dust has settled." 
John Exum
Parrott Academy, Class of 2000
The Citadel, B.A. French
Universite de Strasburg, M.A. International Relations, European Studies
University of South Carolina, International MBA
"Parrott's academic program and extracurricular activities allow students to experience at first hand how success follows hard work." 
Stuart Brooks
Parrott Academy, Class of 2006
North Carolina State University, B.A.
University of South Carolina, J.D.
"My experience at Parrott Academy can be summed up in two words; integrity and commitment. The school and all its employees showed integrity through their honesty and strong moral standards. The administration, coaches, faculty, and staff were all committed to reaching a common goal. That goal was to provide a great education along with a positive experience for students." 
Trey Mooring
Parrott Academy, Class of 1995
University of South Alabama, Ma.Ed.
University of South Alabama, M.S. Physician Assistant Studies
"Attending Parrott Academy from Kindergarten to 12th grade was the foundation for the way I have lived my entire adult life, not only did it provide me a nurturing environment to grow up, it taught me how to handle life situations with dignity and class. Parrott also introduced me to a group of my life long best friends and I am so happy to have my children attend Parrott and grow up with the same educational and social opportunities that are only found at Parrott Academy." 
Trent Mooring
Parrott Academy, Class of 1995
Barton College, B.S. Business Administration and Finance
"While attending a performing arts school is common for high school musicians aspiring matriculation at a conservatory, I am pleased that I diverted to the challenging, nurturing, and well-rounded education that Parrott Academy and its faculty bestowed upon me. Handling the many academic/performance demands of my undergraduate conservatory education was painless, and now as a graduate student at Yale University's School of Music, I find myself embracing the critical thinking, writing, and research techniques I learned during my four years at Parrott. It is a school for artists, a school for the sports savvy, a school for the burgeoning physicist, and most importantly, Parrott is a school that does not indulge in a "one-size-fits-all" outlook, but embraces and challenges all students in all walks of life to realize their full potential." 
Patrick Kreeger
Parrott Academy, Class of 2008
The Curtis Institute of Music, B. Music
Yale University, M. Music
"Parrott teaches by using experiences, instilling values, and building community. The curriculum is advanced, the teachers are incredibly supportive, and the atmosphere is that of family. The opportunities that Parrott provided for me then were endless, from sports to service to friendship to preparedness. I am seeing how these opportunities molded me more and more each day as I begin my own career in education. It is such a joy to share this love for Parrott with alumni, faculty, and fellow classmates of 2009." 
Kathryn Brooks
Parrott Academy, Class of 2009
North Carolina State University, B.S. Elementary Education
4th grade teacher, Forest Pines Drive Elementary School
"APA started as just school for me but quickly evolved to family and continues to be today. What made APA so special to me was the faculty. The faculty teach curriculum thoroughly but more importantly incorporate life lessons that helped me significantly in college and life. All in all I can't imagine or know where I would be today without APA." 
Nathan Perry
Parrott Academy, Class of 2007
East Carolina University, B.S. Business Administration and Management
"APA is a gem for eastern North Carolina. When I got to college, I truly felt ahead of the game. My teachers at Parrott were so personal and devoted. They encouraged me to follow my own path in life and to always give my best. And now, I'm amazed to see the successes of my fellow graduates in such a variety of fields like business, medicine, science, and the arts." 
Sean Seymour
Parrott Academy, Class of 2010
The University of Michigan, B.F.A. Musical Theatre
"From the arts to the sciences to athletics, APA provided me the platform to pursue all of my passions. While my time at Parrott was marked by rich instruction in the classroom, it was also defined by unmatched opportunities on the sports field and the stage, across the state and nation. Above all, Parrott instilled an academic discipline that not only prepared me to excel in college, but also set the stage for my professional life at PepsiCo." 
Paige Rotondo
Parrott Academy, Class of 2010
Northwestern University, Communication Studies
"Parrott prepared me well for success in college and graduate school but more importantly success in life beyond the classroom. It's hard to say exactly what to call it but APA instills in you a passion for excellence and achievement that is present years after graduation. That same attitude permeates the faculty, the administration, the coaches, the directors, the students, the families, and all who grace her doors. It's in the pride that wells up when someone asks where you attended school and you have the privilege to say, "Parrott." 
David With
Parrott Academy, Class of 2000
Campbell University, B.A.
Wake Forest University, M. Div.
"Attending Parrott Academy kindergarten through 12th grade provided me with a foundation of skills, life lessons, and friendships that have shaped who I am today. Parrott prides itself with being a college preparatory school, and in my opinion definitely held up to this claim. Attending UNC-Chapel Hill for my undergraduate degree, I felt the study skills I learned at Parrott along with the challenging academics gave me an advantage over other classmates who spent the first year of college "learning how to study". In addition to academics, the service to others attitude I experienced through SERV community projects has led me to my career of nursing and love for medical and service trips. Lastly, the friendships I made during my thirteen years do not only include classmates, but also many faculty who continue to stay in touch and support me through academic and career endeavors. If you are looking for a unique, challenging, and rewarding educational instruction for your child, I would highly recommend Arendell Parrott Academy." 
Amanda Peoples Foster
Parrott Academy, Class of 2004
UNC-CH, B.S. Nursing, RN
UNC-W, M.S. Nursing, FNP
"One of the greatest assets of Parrott Academy lies beyond traditional rubrics of academic strength. Yes, the curriculum is comprehensive and prepares students for whichever paths they may choose in life, but the greater strength is how the Academy has fostered a supportive environment that encourages each student to pursue his own strengths and interests. APA is a family based around the central tenets of truth, honor, and initiative; its graduates are not only prepared -- but also held up -- to seek and to succeed." 
Barron Weyerhaeuser
Parrott Academy, Class of 2004
American University, B.A. Communication, Legal Institutions, Economics, Government
Shanghai Theatre Academy, M.F.A. Candidate, Acting



Student Profiles

 *student profiles from school year 2016-2017

Myrha Qadir

Myrha Qadir found the spotlight in sixth grade and has never looked back. “I was cast as the understudy to Charlotte in Charlotte’s Web. I was only on the stage for about two seconds as an extra, but I fell in love with it,” Myrha said.

And the crowds loved her. Myrha soon made a reputation for herself as a serious actress, expanding her talents with each year. “The year we did Fiddler on the Roof was a challenge because it was the first time I was asked to play a male character. All the musicals were fun. I think playing the role of Cinderella’s evil step-sister is the most fun I’ve had on stage,” she said.

In her senior year, Myrha debuted her own original play, Placebo, to rave reviews from the audience. While she was planning to study psychology with a possible minor in theater, she was still a little sad to leave APA. She said, “I’ll miss my friends, the theater, the whole experience.”
Will Lupton
Most summers, you can find Will Lupton on the job with the Appalachian Service Project. “It is a faith based program that serves families in need by doing construction projects,” Will said.

Will had worked at putting on a tin roof, replacing underpinning, building a wheel chair ramp, and replacing flooring in various rooms. He said, “I like working in construction, and I get to meet people you would never normally meet. It makes you very appreciative of what you have. People are so happy that you have come to help and spend time with them.”

Combining his love for construction and helping others, Will planned to study engineering and business and felt that his time at APA and his service work had helped to put him on the right path. Of his service work, he said, “I’ve learned that God is very real. He sent me up there for a reason, and I’m glad he did.”
Jane Fields

Starting at the age of three, Jane Fields has always been passionate about playing the violin. “I grew up learning to play,” she said. “I’ve learned to love classical music and chamber music.”

Jane felt that she had benefitted from her time in APA’s orchestra program. “I’ve learned more from the orchestra setting here than in private lessons. I have been able to see how all the instruments work together, as well as learn from other students,” she said.

Jane’s music had led to many opportunities, including her participation in several honors programs, such as the Eastern Youth Orchestra at ECU, the Cannon Music Camp, and the Summer Chamber Music Intensive at ECU. She hoped to attend UNC-Chapel Hill and major in music with a minor in Spanish. She said, “I’m not sure exactly what I want to do, but music will definitely be a part of it.”
William Alexander-Lee
Coming to APA three years ago as a sophomore, William Alexander-Lee had a different perspective of the school than most. “I went to a large public school in Alabama where sports were very big and competitive. Here, sports were still competitive, but the academics were on a whole new level.”

William found his place on the soccer team, and also made new friends in other competitive ventures. “Ping pong is something I started playing with my dad, and we did a few tournaments. I’ve played with some friends here and at ECU. I also got serious about chess a few years back, and I’ve spent time playing with friends at school during lunch or online.”

Working hard to keep his grades up, William felt that APA had prepared him for the next step. “I didn’t have to work very hard at my old school, but here has been a different story. I think the work ethic I have acquired here will definitely help me in college.”
Sydney Thomas
Not many people can say they have encountered the world’s deadliest diseases up close, but Sydney Thomas spent a week at the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta, GA doing just that. “We took college courses on disease control and biotechnology. We talked with researchers who had actually worked with the Ebola virus in Africa, and we were allowed to enter high level labs and actually see some of the highest risk diseases kept in restricted areas,” she said.

Planning to study medicine, Sydney wasn’t sure of her specialty, but was keenly interested in deadly diseases. “We saw maps of the most recent outbreaks all over the world. It was scary but exciting at the same time,” she said.

Sydney admitted that she would miss the closeness of the soccer team and her APA family after leaving for college. She said, “I would tell anyone just getting started to experience everything you can. It goes by fast.”
Lauren Fletcher
Taking pictures is something that comes naturally to Lauren Fletcher. Finding her way to the art room, Lauren began to get serious about photography during her freshman year. “I like to take pictures of everyday life and things that happen in nature,” she said.

Her standing frog photo won a National Silver Key for Lauren, and the first National Scholastic Key for APA. Last year, Lauren made APA history once more when she earned a National Gold Key for photography, marking the first time an APA student had won gold at the national level. “I spend all of my free time in the art room. Mrs. Miller really pushes me to work hard and to go the extra mile with my artwork,” she said.