A Dubai College science student, who recently survived a life-threatening kidney transplant, has received acceptance offers from 23 prestigious universities in the UK and US.
A young researcher and author, 17-year-old Pritvik Sinhadc is now going to choose between his three top picks, the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Stanford, and Princeton, commenting: “I applied to all these universities because my parents were unsure where I’d get in.”
He goes on to explain: “Caltech has always been my dream school, as it is a STEM research hub. However, I never expected to get in as it’s extremely selective and admits only around 25 to 50 international students. Most of my family members and friends told me that it would be a waste of time if I applied to Caltech. However, I applied and got in!”
“Caltech has always been my dream school, as it is a STEM research hub”
Pritvik said that getting accepted into elite universities came down to one key factor: following his passion. “Many advised that my application might be adversely affected since US universities normally take in ‘holistic’ students, meaning I needed to play sport or get into music, dance or theatre. My passion was not holistic. It was pure research.”
As a result, he advises fellow students to be themselves: “I have had my share of stress, but the one thing that I have not compromised on is my ‘own voice’. No one knows you better than ‘you’ and this is what counts.”
Once Pritvik makes his final choice, he will be set to pursue his double major in Physics and Astrophysics, and a minor in Planetary Sciences and/or Mathematics starting from September 2022.
An Impressive and Brave Journey
Pritvik was only seven years old when he published his first book: ‘When Dinosaurs Roamed the Earth’. Three further books followed, alongside several scientific journal articles. He also co-authored the ‘NASA Astrobiology Primer’ to be published in the ‘Astrobiology’ journal.
His journey hasn’t been easy, though, as he has battled kidney problems, which necessitated dialysis and many procedures. In 2020, he underwent a successful kidney transplant.
“No one knows you better than ‘you’ and this is what counts”
Strong and Determined
Pritvik received several scholarships, including a renewable $33,500 (AED 123,000) annual Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship from UC Berkeley, a renewable stipend of $14,500 (AED 53,000) per year from Arizona State University, and a Rabi Scholar from Columbia University. Going to Caltech, Stanford or Princeton, though, means he’ll have to rely on Rise, a global scholarship and mentorship programme he earned for his research ‘Network Theory Models of Mass Extinctions’.
He is, however, adamant about taking up paid internships, doing part-time work, or winning other scholarships to supplement his income and save the Rise funds for his entrepreneurial and research venture. “I am very determined and strong in my decisions and with Rise as my support, I will surely get there,” he concludes.