2024 High School Awardees







Priyanka Karunakaran, Evergreen Valley High School







Priyanka is a senior at Evergreen Valley High School. She will be attending MIT in the Fall of 2024, where she plans on majoring in Computer Science and Business and minoring in public policy. Founder/Co-Captain of FTC Artemis 18715 and President of FRC Team 2854, she has spent much of her time in high school exploring engineering through FIRST Robotics, recognized as a FIRST Dean’s List Winner at the 2023 World Championships. Outside school, she is the First Author on Data Science Research in Healthcare at the Montefiore Medical Center, using LLMs, NLP, and Biostatistics. She is an aspiring entrepreneur who hopes to revolutionize the

A.I. and robotics industry. An avid SWENexter of the Society of Women Engineers and Racial/ Social Equity Co-Lead of the District 4 San Jose Youth Commission , she also focuses on making STEM more accessible and less intimidating to underserved students both globally and locally reaching over 22 countries and 5600 students, empowering young women and neurodiverse students to follow their passions and reach their fullest potential. She hopes to use her own skills and passions to make a difference in the world and healthcare through engineering.

Nishka Sharma, Moreau Catholic High School

Nishka is a high school student from Moreau Catholic High School in Hayward, California. She is passionate about computer science and its applications to various fields. Nishka is the global lead of the Youth Parliament, a new committee at the United Nations Science Summit that organizes students from across the globe to speak on scientific issues and advancements. She is also a computational neuroscience researcher at Stanford University’s Schnitzer lab working on using AI to analyze dendritic spine images. As the CEO and founder of the Youth Mentorship Project, a 501(c)(3) global non profit, she aims to focus on providing mentorship to

students on STEM related projects. Partnering with organizations such as the Society of Women Engineers and Climate and Digital Education in Sierra Leone, she hopes to impact as many students as possible. She has created a platform, YMP Match, that provides students access to a mentorship network at an affordable cost. Nishka is software engineering manager at the Fair Opportunity Project, an EdTech organization that aims to provide students with college application help and especially financial aid. She has also participated in Apple’s Engineering and Technology Camp as 1 of 15 total students selected. Here she had the opportunity to present a product to Apple executives. Nishka is the president of the Girls Who Code and SWENext chapter at her high school, a Women in Data Science (WiDS) ambassador at Stanford, mobile app director on the Space Cookies (First Robotics Competition team), and a Stanford Seeds of Change participant. She has been honored with as a National Center for Women in Technology 2024 National Honorable Mention and Regional Winner.

Vivian Yang, Castro Valley High School

Vivian is a senior at Castro Valley High School. She works hard to be a role model for fellow women in STEM and hopes to inspire girls through her work and outreach as the Vice President of SWE at her school. Outside of STEM, Vivian is the President and co-founder of the Radiant Readers Club at school, which was also her Girl Scouts Silver Award project. Through the club, she enjoys reading to kids and leading volunteers to support literacy in local elementary schools. Vivian is also currently pursuing her Gold Award, in which she hopes to launch a company with her friends and partners in Engineering and Business. She plans to study Mechanical Engineering and Business Administration at a 4-year university and aspires to be a co-founder and CEO of a startup one day. Connect with Vivian on LinkedIn! https://www.linkedin.com/in/ viviany31

Amanda Zhang, Mountain View High School

Amanda is a senior at Mountain View High School. When she is not at school, she spends most of her time building cool robots with her FIRST Robotics Team, Space Cookies, as the software captain. In her community, she leads a few initiatives to support women in STEM, such as the recent AI in Career Fields panel she organized and hosted at her school. In her free time, Amanda likes to enjoy the outdoors through hikes, beach drives, and taking scenic photos.