The High Point Legacy: Alumni Spotlight: Carolyn Ting (Class of ’99)

“Looking back, I can clearly see that many of my passions, values, and choices were seeded when I was a student at High Point, and I feel lucky that I grew up in such a nurturing environment.”

My Brief Bio—

I am the daughter of Taiwanese immigrants, and our family moved to California when I was two. I grew up in Pasadena and graduated from High Point in 1999. I continued my formal high school education at Flintridge Prep, college at UC Berkeley, and business school at Stanford University.

I currently work at Meta, where I’m on the Social Impact team. My team focuses on building safe and supportive experiences for teens on our platforms. As someone who had a mostly analog childhood, I spend a lot of my time today reflecting on what it means to be a young person growing up in a digital age.

I have tried to follow both my head and my heart in my career. I love people, and I’m inspired to help make the lives of others healthier and happier. Before my current job, I had the opportunity to help develop global health partnerships at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, launch a global research center for gender equality at Stanford Medicine, and build 23andMe’s™ patient advocacy function.

I currently live in San Francisco with my wonderful partner, Praveen, and our community. Looking back, I can clearly see that many of my passions, values, and choices were seeded when I was a student at High Point, and I feel lucky that I grew up in such a nurturing environment.

My High Point Experience—

High Point was a school that encouraged our curiosity, fostered lifelong friendships, created a culture of kindness, and built our confidence to explore our unique interests in the world.

I entered High Point in second grade. Terra was the first person to welcome me, and I’ll always remember the warmth she showed me on my first day! The Carden Method of reading and spelling (which was used at High Point in the early days) was completely new to me, and Mrs. Hicks helped me grow from being intimidated to confident in this new language arts format.

After graduating from High Point, my class stayed close, and we continued to have informal reunions at Ranchero’s Restaurant in Pasadena over the years. One informal reunion concluded with crowning Mr. Jaime Mejia as the champion of the 1-handed push-up contest! My dear friend and classmate Eugenia’s son recently started at High Point, so I’m looking forward to cheering Milo on as a new Eagle, especially in any upcoming holiday plays.

My Personal Observations and Reflections—

I loved my teachers and classmates at High Point. When there was a devastating fire in Altadena, Mr. Orr, our facilities manager at the time, hid under a desk as police were patrolling so that he could stay and hose down our school if necessary. Fortunately, the school was largely untouched. In 4th grade I was inspired by Mrs. Franklin’s experience in the Peace Corps, and I told her that I wanted to be a “humanitarian” when I grew up so I could be like her. I was impressed by how Mr. Cates, our other facilities manager, could recognize every student and parent who arrived at carline in the afternoon.

I loved all of our 7th and 8th grade teachers, especially Mr. Friedman for math, Mr. Schaffer and Ms. Turner for science, and Mrs. Schwartz for English. In 8th grade I also remember when Mr. Mejia pulled me aside and told me that I was a runner. I had never considered myself an athlete before that moment, but because of his belief in me, I ended up running track in middle school, serving as a co-captain of my cross-country team in high school, and continuing to run throughout my life as a way to honor my well-being.

Upon graduation, my High Point experience inspired me to choose a high school that also valued a culture of kindness. I attended Flintridge Prep with other High Point alumni: Anshu, Eugenia, Matt, Prescott, and Shari. It was precious to already have those deep connections when transitioning to high school. We would mystify our new Prep classmates when we would occasionally burst into songs we had learned over the years from Mrs. Brune—in perfect unison!

Last year, I had the honor of attending the weddings and baby showers of four High Point alumni! Nearly 25 years after graduation, I’m deeply grateful for lifelong lessons and many lasting friendships.


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