A High School Senior’s Perspective About The MECC

Meet Elan Salmon, a bright high school senior at University High School (UHS) in Tucson, Arizona, whose journey into Excel esports is inspiring. Today, we delve into Elan’s insights and experiences as he navigates the realm of data analytics and problem-solving at a young age. 

Elan’s passion for computer science and coding laid the groundwork for his venture into the world of Excel. He was also inspired by his father, who emphasized the value of being able to take raw data and turn it into something usable and understandable by anyone. However, it was his experience shadowing Dr. David Brown’s Excel esports class at the Eller College of Management that ignited a new spark. Under Brown’s guidance, Elan discovered a unique approach to problem-solving, realizing that learning in higher academia isn’t always linear. The challenge of learning, like a great puzzle, motivated Elan to look beyond the confines of his high school education. 

Elan Salmon, University High School (UHS) Tucson, Arizona

But why delve into Excel? For Elan, it is the sheer joy of learning. With a flexible mindset and hunger for knowledge, he sees Excel as a gateway to honing essential problem-solving and data analytics skills. It is also an excellent laboratory to experiment in different fields, allowing him to sort out his interests and passions without being worried about the outcome, or even success. To Elan, high school is not a place in which there’s a lot of freedom to learn for the sake of learning, and he didn’t think shadowing a college course would be any different. Little did Elan know, shadowing a college class was exactly what he needed to open the door to endless learning opportunities and new passions. 

Through Dr. Brown’s class, Elan grasped the invaluable opportunity to master data and analytics – skills he believes transcend the confines of a college campus. Early exposure to such skills is not just preparation; it’s empowerment to thrive in an increasingly data-driven world. Elan now recognizes the practical applications of Excel beyond academia, from enhancing efficiency in professional settings to providing customized tools across industries.

Elan’s message to aspiring Excel enthusiasts is clear: Excel isn’t reserved for business majors. With dedication and perseverance, anyone can master it. Through his experiences in Brown’s class, Elan learned that grit and determination are the keys to unlocking your Excel potential. Similar to learning a new language, it takes trial and error and a lot of time. It can be complex and a bit overwhelming, but treating it like a puzzle makes the learning more fun, and the end result is totally worth it. Elan wholeheartedly recommends early engagement with Excel to fellow high school students, recognizing it as a valuable head start in their educational journeys.

As Elan looks ahead to the future, his interests span diverse fields, from engineering to philosophy and law. Yet, Excel remains a constant companion, offering him the flexibility to explore and decide his path. Elan’s journey emphasizes the power of curiosity and determination and serves as a reminder – it’s never too early to start learning and Excel-ling.

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