By Brittany Gardner
Sentinel Contributing Writer
Driven by the addiction for much success and the desire to always do better, 14 year old Alexis Akingbade, a Los Angeles native, has proven time and time again that she definitely has that “IT” factor. Currently a student at USC 32nd Street Magnet Middle School, Alexis Akingbade has done it all. From jazz to hip hop, ballet to modern, flamingo and tap, she has defiantly touched upon several areas of entertainment. She notes her most memorable moment as performing at the Gala with MTV’s “America’s Best Dance Crew” finalist, The Beat Freaks. Though very passionate about her performing arts, Alexis unquestionably knows her main priority on and off of school grounds is her academics, a subject she does not carry lightly.
Honor roll student and 4.0 G.P.A maintainer since the 4th grade, Alexis is now in the running with one other student for her graduating class’s valedictorian title. Coming from a large loving family who couldn’t be more proud, Alexis credits her parents and older brother for keeping her on track and grounded. Alexis’ mother, Cheryl Bridges, says “I always tell Lexie (Alexis) to aim high, and you will land somewhere in the middle,” and that is exactly what she does. In 2009, then in seventh grade, Alexis took and passed a math placement test at Los Angeles Trade Technical College. With scores so high, she was able to skip from seventh to ninth grade math, still passing with an A. While some people think Alexis has a natural gift at excelling in her academics, her mother says, “She is no Einstein. All of her achievements come with hard work and unwavering determination. I do not have to worry about Alexis not doing her homework or performing poorly in her studies. Whether a school night or weekend, Alexis will wake up around 3:00 a.m. on random days and study herself back to sleep or just to get a head start on work she has to do.”
After choreographing and performing a dance routine as part of her audition and interview, Alexis was recently accepted into Central Los Angeles High School #9-of Visual and Performing Arts, also known by its students as V.A.P.A. While attending V.A.P.A., Alexis will be taking all honors and advanced courses. She will also continue strengthening her performance arts with a variety of courses. Setting a goal to uphold her 4.0 grade point average and to become her senior graduating class’s valedictorian, Alexis knows the competition will be immense and studying will have to increase. When asked what she hopes to obtain from her high school career, Alexis answered, “I am going to work hard for a full-ride scholarship to either Harvard University or Yale, and there I will study law… I know I have to do what I need to do, in order to do what I want to do,” says Alexis.
Although Alexis illustrate to be a bright young woman with what seems to be an even brighter future, she still deems it important that she balances her life with things teenagers like to do! She describes herself as a joyful person with a pure heart, who enjoys singing, running, debating and reading. She has also recently taken up playing the traps (drums) and going green. In addition, Alex is a very active member at St. Paul Evangelical Lutheran Church, where she sings in the choir, teaches praise and worship dancing, and assists in being a hostess for church functions.
Well, one thing is for sure: Alexis Akingbade is without a doubt preparing herself for a future of success. She is a ambitious girl who seeks nothing but the best and strives hard in every aspect, and is certain of reaching the top. She knows there is nothing out of her grasp with honest hard work and on the path she has created for herself. I’d like to say, “Congratulations, young woman, you are halfway there”!