16 months ago, Andrei discovered a new passion: chess.
“I love challenges that can help my education,” Andrei says.
“Chess is all about problem solving, so I knew it was something I would enjoy.”
Andrei has competed at elite tournaments alongside some of the best chess players in the world.
At a highly selective international competition in Las Vegas, in one of the categories, Andrei placed 9th out of 2,000 people.
“It was so amazing,” Andrei says.
“It gave me the confidence to do even more tournaments.”
Setting an Example
Andrei’s fearlessness taking on challenges, especially in his education, was a contributing factor to his “Yes I Can” win, according to the official announcement from the Council for Exceptional Children.
Earlier this month, Andrei and eleven other recipients traveled to Tampa to receive their awards.
Andrei says it was a great experience to meet other exceptional students like him.
“Even though we were all from different places, we shared a bond,” Andrei says.
“Everyone was unique – like me. Our accomplishments show the world that we can do anything.”
Andrei’s “Yes I Can” win is the culmination of years of hard work – and Andrei is only just getting started.
“I’ve been thinking about joining the Marine Corps, the Navy or the Army after college,” Andrei says.
“I still have time to make a decision, but I know I want to make a difference and help people.”
One thing is certain: Andrei’s positive attitude will help him succeed, wherever the future takes him.