Bridget MeaneyTeachers chose graduating senior Bridget Meaney for this year's Castilleja Award, earned by the senior who best exemplifies the school's "five Cs" — conscience, courtesy, character, courage and charity.
The 'five Cs' of Castilleja
"It was kind of a shocker," Meaney said.
"I've put my whole life into this school and it's really nice to be recognized. At the same time, a lot of people did that so it's not fair for just one person to get the award," she said, demonstrating splendid mastery of the second C (courtesy).
Though the five Cs are "the bedrock of the school," girls are encouraged to add additional Cs, and are constantly doing so, Meaney said.
"There are many others — change, culture, community are just a few. You can use what they have in the tradition, but also add your own things."
Meaney said she'll most miss the warm community of Castilleja.
"It's really like a family here, a sorority in the nicest terms. The teachers here are incredible and the girls are so smart — it was intimidating at first."
Active in student government, admissions, tutoring and peer advising, Meaney also played for Castilleja's tennis team.
After traveling to Italy as a babysitter for a local family this summer, Meaney will enroll at Duke University with a possible major in history and economics.
"I love history, and I'm thinking of focusing on Russia. It's interesting to think about Russia because it's a European country in a way, but the culture is not quite European and not quite Asian — it's kind of its own thing.
"It has such a rich history and it's kind of an emerging market."
What she won't miss about high school is the all-girls aspect of Castilleja, the "endless pursuit of college," and doing dishes.
Of her generation, Meaney reflects: "I feel like we're the multi-taskers — always on Facebook and Twitter, the iPhone or whatever and doing a lot of other stuff, yet also doing well in school.
"Also, we put as much value on EQ (emotional intelligence) as IQ, and that's a positive change.
"There are so many smart people in the world, but you still need people skills. It's harder to put people in a box because so many people are so multi-faceted and you really need everything to succeed."