Carlton Washington, 17
Senior, Cross Keys High School
Even at a young age, Carlton Washington had an interest in engineering.
“I used to like to take stuff apart,” said Carlton, the son of Nikki Selman of Brookhaven and Carlton Washington of Rex, Ga. “When something broke, I liked to open it up and see if I could fix it.”
More recently, after dropping his MP3 player in the sink, Carlton was able to take it apart, dry the parts and restore it to working order.
Because of his interest in engineering, Carlton was selected to attend a summer program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from June 19 to Aug. 1. The program, called Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science (MITES), includes college-level courses like calculus and physics, and engineering electives such as electrical and mechanical engineering.
“It was tough,” Carlton said about the program. “I felt very challenged, but I think it’ll prepare me for when I really go to college.”
In addition to being a member of the Math Club, the Beta Club and the National Honor Society at Cross Keys, Carlton serves as secretary-general on Model United Nations.
He also plays varsity football and runs track. He “really hated” football when he first started playing, but began to enjoy it after training more. He joined the track team to condition for football.
“The coaches just told me to run track to get faster, so I ran track, and I found that I like it more than football,” he said.
While Carlton’s involvement in clubs and sports takes up a lot of his time, he has been able to balance extracurricular activities and academics. A Principal’s List student with a 4.125 grade point average, Carlton recently won the academic award for track for having the highest GPA on the team. He also won honors such as Outstanding Achievement in U.S. History and American Literature, a Certificate of Achievement in Advanced Placement Biology and Physics, the Georgia Certificate of Merit, the Sewanee Award for Excellence in Writing, and an award for perfect attendance.
Even though Carlton has taken some of the most rigorous classes that Cross Keys offers, such as AP Biology and Human Geography, he said he still doesn’t feel challenged enough. However, he hopes to be challenged in AP Calculus this year.
Carlton hopes to attend college at Georgia Tech next year. He also plans to apply to Morehouse College, the California Institute of Technology and possibly MIT. He would like to major in either electrical or mechanical engineering.
In the meantime, Carlton plans to enjoy his senior year, particularly football and track seasons.