Sophia Li
Sophia Li
Charline and Red McCombs Family Forty Acres Scholarship
Forty Acres Scholars Class of 2024
Murphy, TX
High School
Plano East Senior High School

When I was five years old, I was dead set on becoming a conglomeration of Yo Yo Ma the cellist, Lang Lang the pianist, Michelle Kwan the ice skater, and a never-ending list of more role models- each a leader in their respective spheres. The world was brimming with activities and places to be explored, and I was determined to venture through it all. I took on piano, cello, dance, badminton, and pushed myself to try anything and everything that interested me. It is this endless curiosity and drive that has drawn me to computer science and business and shaped my involvement within my community. When I shadowed under a project manager at Cisco the summer before 12th grade, I felt in awe of the exceptional people I met and the interactions I saw; I explored the depths of the labyrinthine data center and watched people analyze sales statistics; I observed the balance between persuading and compromising as I sat in on countless meetings. The infinitude of possibilities with computer science and the forward driven manner of business meshed with my eagerness of exploration and vast opportunities, and I will continue my venture with the UT Computer Science and Business program.

My involvement in numerous interests has also lead me to discover that the best rewards weren't necessarily winning cello competitions or beating a rival at badminton, but rather being able to spread my passions to those around me. I am a part of United Sound, where I teach students with learning disabilities how to play instruments. Even though I love being able to express emotions beyond words with All-State ensembles and the overwhelming awe I feel when listening to the Dallas Symphony, my favorite musical moments are when I play along with my students in United Sound. My most meaningful moments are when I get to make the same moments for others, and that is something I will continue to do not only in my four years at UT, but for the remainder of my life.

Business Honors; Computer Science

Honors Program
Texas Honors Computer Science and Business (Texas CSB)

Other Academic Interests
Music; Psychology

What drew you to the Forty Acres Scholars Program?
After the initial draw of financial freedom the Program offers and the enrichment stipend for a global educational experience, I was captivated by the fellow members and alumni that I met during the Finalist Weekend. I have never seen such a diverse and passionate group of people that are all driven towards the advancements of themselves and the larger community around them. It was truly a motivational experience to be inspired by such a complex and spirited group in such a short amount of time during a single weekend. I cannot wait to see what four years and beyond will look like with the Forty Acres family. This program also involves attending events, hearing speakers, and giving presentations that I know will broaden my horizons and elevate my college experience. The possibilities and friendships are endless within the Forty Acres Scholars Program and I am so honored to be a part of it all.