A natural born leader, in the classroom and in the community

Incoming freshman Kaila Corrington honed her leadership skills as president of her high school’s chapter of Key Club International. Courtesy photo.

Building a web­site for her high school’s chapter of Key Club Inter­na­tional sold incoming freshman Kaila Cor­rington on studying com­puter sci­ence at North­eastern University.

“I didn’t have any expe­ri­ence writing code for a web­site,” Cor­rington recalls, noting her love of math, logic and the pur­suit of defin­i­tive answers, “but watching a string of char­ac­ters come to life con­vinced me.”

Cor­rington, who will enroll this fall in the Col­lege of Com­puter and Infor­ma­tion Sci­ence, has been accepted into the inau­gural class of the Uni­ver­sity Scholars Pro­gram. The full-tuition pro­gram sup­ports highly accom­plished future thought leaders, inno­va­tors and entre­pre­neurs who have excelled both in and out of the classroom.

Corrington’s laundry list of accom­plish­ments makes her an ideal fit for the pro­gram. She honed her lead­er­ship skills, for example, by serving as pres­i­dent of her high school’s chapter of Key Club and editor-in-chief of its year­book. As a freshman, sopho­more and junior, she demon­strated her love of learning by pro­ducing 10-minute doc­u­men­taries on Albert Ein­stein, the Cuban Mis­sile Crisis and the double-helical struc­ture of DNA, all of which reached statewide competition.

A National Merit Scholar who fin­ished at the top of her class in eight dif­ferent courses, Cor­rington pro­claims that the trick to bal­ancing course­work with extracur­ric­ular activ­i­ties is time man­age­ment. As she puts it, “If you let your­self fall behind on things, you won’t be able to bal­ance anything.” The Upland, Calif., native, looks for­ward to working with her fellow Uni­ver­sity Scholars, many of whom grew up out­side of the United States, in coun­tries such as India, Bolivia and Japan. Stu­dents in the accom­plished group have recorded albums, cre­ated iPhone appli­ca­tions and raised money for orphaned chil­dren in Africa.

“I’m going to be sur­rounded by a great group of stu­dents at North­eastern,” Cor­rington explains. “It’s going to be fun to work with new people in an exciting environment.”

Cor­rington expressed interest in trying out for Northeastern’s intra­mural soft­ball team, for which she would like to play third base or center field, and joining the University’s chapter of Circle K, Key Club’s col­le­giate version.

Her long-term career plans include cre­ating mobile appli­ca­tions for smart­phones and building web­sites for non­profit orga­ni­za­tions. Par­tic­i­pating in Northeastern’s flag­ship experiential-learning pro­gram, she says, would help her reach her goals.

“I’m inter­ested in doing a Dia­logue of Civ­i­liza­tions pro­gram and studying abroad in Europe,” Cor­rington says. “I might want to go to Italy, because of its his­tory, but I am sure I will be immersed in the cul­ture and have an amazing expe­ri­ence no matter where I go.”