Kion Tupper of Searsport, Maine brings a great sense of complexity to what being a student means. Tupper attended Searsport District High School in his hometown where he received a worthwhile and extensive high school education while participating in multiple extracurriculars. After taking the PSAT/SAT standardized tests that are often used by college admissions decision teams, he was “recognized as the first National Merit Scholar ever to attend Searsport District High School.”
It is often believed that high school teachers try to challenge their students, and students just do the school work they are assigned. In Tupper’s world, it was much more than that. For example, he explained how his science and math teachers were astounded by his ability to comprehend these two subjects.
“I recount many times when I would have to speak up in class to tell the teacher that they answered their sample problems incorrectly,” Tupper said, flashing back on his times in high school.
Tupper is just one example of how students can challenge the minds of their teachers, and that it’s not always the other way around. People have also been impressed with Tupper’s ability to essentially play devil’s advocate, and with his ability to reason in conversations relating to important political, social and other societal issues.
From a young age, Tupper has been interested in robotics and technology. He was an active and influential leading member on his middle school’s robotics team, and did the same on his high school’s robotics team.
Tupper fell in love with the University of Maine campus, as well as the staff members he met during his time at the Consider Engineering program hosted by UMaine while he was in high school. Although he applied to a number of other select colleges and universities, after considering his financial situation, his career interest and which place had the most desirable location, he chose Maine for his undergraduate degree.
Tupper’s interest in technology and computer science hasn’t wavered, leading him to declare his major in computer science. However, Tupper is also considering double majoring in political science, leaning on his early interest in politics.
Given his National Merit Scholar status, Tupper has had to pay a minimal amount to attend UMaine, and it granted him a place in the Honors College. Even though the Honors
College has their own specific housing, he wasn’t initially placed in it during his freshman year as he was more interested in living on the engineering floor in Oxford Hall. However, he did end the year living in Penobscot Hall, an Honors College residence hall.
Through his second year, he stayed in his previous home in Penobscot Hall. This past summer, given his work and personal situations, he stayed on campus in Hancock Hall. He has now returned to Honors College housing for the current fall semester to surround himself with like-minded and focused individuals.
He has worked on a number of personal computer science related projects throughout his time at UMaine, and this will likely remain the case. Tupper works for Network Maine on campus as a Student Network Technician. He has been doing this work for about a year.
Tupper has been trying to push himself out of his comfort zone in regard to being more social on campus. He had entered the rush season for fraternities last academic year a bit late, but showed interest in SigEp and TKE. This fall, he plans to rush TKE officially. He hopes joining a fraternity will help him find a group of interesting and passionate people to call friends.
There is no doubt the Tupper will continue to thrive and play an active role in the UMaine student body and community. His successes have taken him this far, and they will surely take him even farther.