Class of 2022’s Valedictorian Ventures On to Solve Bigger Problems


Timothy Chen has been recognized as the Valedictorian of the Class of 2022 with a GPA of 4.9645.

Aahil Nishad, Staff Writer

Valedictorian Timothy Chen is affectionately known by most students as one of the brightest minds of the student body. 

Students have heard of his academic abilities, and his stats certainly reflect such ability. AP Scholar Awards for 6 Exams, a National Merit Finalist, and a grade point average of 4.96, Chen has showcased his academic prowess in multiple facets.

In addition to just academics, Chen is an accomplished musician with proficiency in the violin and piano. He has been recognized with various state-level awards from prestigious organizations and performed impressive recitals for the public on multiple occasions. 

Yet, Chen specifically recalls DHS’s Spooktacular as one of his fondest musical performances, “dressing up on Halloween [for a] nice and casual performance.” Undertaken by orchestra teacher Mary Peters, Chen remembers the 2019 Spooktacular concert as being a fun way to play for “the little kids.”

Chen credits Peters for being a main motivator in setting aside his inhibitions and pursuing greater activities, especially with her advice that “If you mess up, the worst-case scenario is that everybody sees it, and laughs at you. And that’s the worst-case scenario, so just go for it.”

However, Chen really demonstrates his persistent pursuit of knowledge with his love for mathematics. Chen’s explanation for his interest in the complex topic is ironically quite simple, crediting the “patterns, abstractness, and the rigor” to his focus on mathematics. 

After taking AP Calculus BC in his Sophomore year, Chen took WCSU courses starting in the summer before his junior year and later, including Calculus III, Partial Differential Equations, and Introduction to Real Analysis. 

“It is calculus…but more rigorous,” Chen laughed, describing his Intro to Analysis class. “The high school ran out [of available math courses], and I wanted to do more, and also get a feel for what I would be doing in college.” 

Chen has gone far representing himself and DHS in multiple advanced math competitions, taking part in the American Mathematics Competition from sophomore through senior year and qualifying for the American Invitational Mathematics Exam.

Chen achieved a perfect score in the USA Mathematical Talent Search and competed in the American Regions Math League as a member of the CT team in both his junior and senior years. His accomplishments would even spill over into linguistics, with qualification for the invitational round of the North America Computational Linguistics Open Competition. Upon further questioning on how he ended up competing in linguistics, Chen once again responded with a simple remark: “I like patterns.”

Chen ascribes a portion of his interest in high-level mathematics to DHS math teacher Thai Nguyen, who was Chen’s math teacher in his sophomore year. “He’s the one that told me to take Calculus early,” Chen remembered. “He has had a huge impact on who I am now.”

Chen’s love for mathematics would extend further into an impact on the DHS community as the President of the Math Team and Vice President of the National Math Honor Society. Under his leadership, the Danbury High School qualified for the state competition this year, where Chen simultaneously earned second place in the state. 

Chen will be studying Mathematics at Williams College this fall, to which he has expressed great excitement and interest in future research and prospects. In his words, Chen will hopefully be “answering unanswered questions…about shapes.”

Chen represents years of hard work, dedication, and success for students in Danbury. Wherever he goes, Chen is sure to make an impact, and we can be confident that he will solve many more problems in the future.