- Sep 19
Meet the Class of 2021: George Kubai from Lowell,...
Meet the Class of 2021: George Kubai from Lowell, Massachusetts
During his junior and senior years of high school, George Kubai immersed himself in the Tenacity Challenge, a Boston-area academic competition for African American and Latino high school students. Teams compete in rigorous quiz-bowl style competitions in science and math and take part in judged projects on history, literature and art.
For last year’s history component, teams were asked to consider the question: How do you think Black Lives Matter has been effective or ineffective at bringing about social change? The big challenge: Team members had to go into their community and interview people on both sides of the issue.
For Kubai, who says he supports the goals and actions of Black Lives Matter, it was personally rewarding and interesting to interview the person who supported the movement. It was harder, but still interesting, he says, to interview the person who did not.
“I obviously disagreed with him and had my own opinions,” he said. “But I respected his right to his. And I got to learn a lot about how he developed this view. It was really tough but very informative.”
This kind of challenging, and at times very personal, academic inquiry is what Kubai hopes to undertake at Brown. While he has deep-seated interest in science — he is considering biomedical engineering as a concentration and medicine as a future career — he says he chose Brown because the Open Curriculum will allow him to engage deeply in the humanities and social sciences as well. He hopes what he gleans in these academic realms will give him a richer understanding of the societal problems he cares the most about — racism, classism, sexism — and empower him to help remedy them.
“I’ve always wanted to make a change in the world,” Kubai said. “I was interested in Brown because here you aren’t just taught to do this or that, but you are taught how to think and how to apply your thinking to the world. My goal is to find what I truly love. I have a lot of interests, but I want to find out: What really makes that fire burn in me?”
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