Madison Koath is a member of the class of 2018 at Rancho Solano Preparatory School. Though she’s in the midst of preparing for final exams, graduation, and, ultimately, college, we sat down with Madison to reflect on the Upper School experience.
Q. You probably have a lot on your mind right now: final exams, your IB assessments, graduation, and college! And now you’ve made it to your senior year at Rancho. How long have you been attending Rancho Solano?
A. I’ve been going to Rancho for thirteen years now, since Kindergarten. I started Kindergarten at the Gilbert campus and ultimately moved to the Middle/Upper School campus. My sister’s been here since Pre-K 3, and is now a fellow high school student.
Q. I was about to ask about your sister! You two were both on the volleyball team this year, correct? What was it like to spend your last season as a Mustang alongside your sister? Also, how long have been playing volleyball and were there any particularly memorable moments throughout your playing career?
A. Playing with my sister will definitely be a favorite memory from senior year for me. And I’ve been playing volleyball since fourth grade, and I’ve played it every year since. Since joining Mustang Athletics, one of the most important events was making it to the state tournament for the first time in Rancho history. I was a freshman and the whole team wasn’t really expected to make it [to the tournament] and we were all secretly watching the state tournament announcements on our computers in class. We went on to play as Division 5 state qualifiers. After the announcement, I remember we all ran into the hallways and were crying with excitement.
Q. Seeing as volleyball has run through almost all of your academic experience, are you going to play at all in college?
A. Actually I’m going to Smith College to play volleyball! Smith is in North Hampton, Massachusetts and I met the coach at a volleyball summer camp in the summer of 2015. I toured the school later and fell in love with the campus and its environment. Back in 2015, the same coach mentioned how he felt lucky that he gets to work with the most powerful women that will change the world and the fact that that statement of feeling exists, and could exist, across a college campus really piqued my interest in Smith. I connected with that idea and immediately thought, “That’s something I really want to do!” I aspire to make a difference, and to make a difference wherever possible, whether that’s social justice issues, humanitarian work, environmental support, whatever! I’m in a group chat with other women in the incoming class and we’re invested in what’s going on in the world. It’s so comforting to know that there are those people out there. People that are committed to making a change for the better.
Q. It sounds like you and Smith are quite the match! I know it can be both exciting and a huge relief to know that you’re going somewhere where you’re most likely to find your ‘tribe.’ And though you’ll be playing volleyball, do you have an idea of what you might want to study?
A. I’m thinking of majoring in biology with a minor in exercise and sports studies. I like science and am considering going the doctor route. One of my dreams is to be a doctor for a volleyball team and travel with them as necessary.
Q. It also seems like Smith and its students are serious champions of leadership. Are you involved with any organizations where you hold leadership positions?
A. You better believe it! At school, I’m the President of our Upper School Student Government (StuGo), VP of our Pre-Med Club, Secretary of Key Club, and a Trailblazer (Student Ambassador for visiting and prospective students). StuGo is probably my favorite group because it’s so deeply involved in all levels of the Upper School, whether that means throwing events or planning for the next election cycle.
Madison Koath is a senior at Rancho Solano Preparatory School.