Senior Spotlight: Darshan Patel


Sarah Cathryne Coltrane, Treasure

This week’s senior spotlight will focus on one of RMA’s brightest stars, Darshan Patel. Darshan is one of the few lifers in the class of 2023. Beloved by faculty members and his fellow classmates, Darshan is an integral part of our RMA community. He lights up every room he walks into by bringing high energy to school daily. You can always count on Darshan as a friend. With his quick-witted personality, he always brings a smile to your face. Darshan’s friend Issac says “I met Darshan when I first came to RMA, and we instantly became friends. Whether it was in the classroom or on the field, he’s always had my back and supported me in all of our endeavors. Darshan has always been able to make others laugh, as he often does on our daily long lunch dates. He’s the hardest working guy I know, both in the classroom and on the tennis court, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for him.” When asked how he would describe himself Darshan said he was witty, chill, and semi-smart


As everyone at school knows, Darshan is so much more than “semi-smart.” He has achieved academic excellence every year at RMA, and Darshan has not taken any shortcuts during his senior year as he continues to challenge himself with the most rigorous schedule available. This year, his schedule consists of Spanish 4, AP Calculus, AP Lit, AP Psychology, AP Bio, and weightlifting. Due to his academic strengths, Darshan is no stranger to receiving awards, a few of which include the Robert Sykes Math Award, Turner-Battle Scholarship, Headmaster’s Award (8th, 9th, and 10th Grade), and A Honors/Academic Excellence awards in various subjects. Darshan is also an active member of numerous clubs at RMA. This year, Darshan has taken on leadership positions in almost all of his clubs, serving as Vice President of Key Club, Treasurer of Senior Beta Club, President of SGA, Honor Council co-chairperson, and an officer of the National Spanish Honor Society, 


Holding the first seed on the tennis team, Darshan is incredibly talented on the court. He practices for 20+ hours a week for tennis, and this hard work has been rewarded with honors such as All-State Tennis (10th and 11th), the Coach’s Award (8th and 9th), and All-Conference Tennis (10th and 11th). Darshan is constantly looking for a new outlet to explore his many interests. When he is not studying for his classes, playing tennis, or doing club work, you can find him shadowing doctors at the Rocky Mount Orthopedic office since his dream is to become an orthopedic surgeon. Even with all of his academic and athletic commitments, Darshan still manages to have a social life and in his free time enjoys hanging out with his friends, playing ping pong, and playing video games. 


Darshan has applied to Duke, UNC, UVA, ECU Honors, Wake Forest, and UCLA. He has already received acceptances from UNC, UVA, and the ECU Honors Program. Darshan has also received the prestigious EC scholarship to ECU for his excellent character and academic achievement. Although he is still undecided about which institution he’ll attend in the fall, we have no doubt he will do excellent things wherever he ends up. It will be hard to let go of such an amazing member of the RMA community, but I know I speak for everyone when I say we wish Darshan the best of luck as he tackles his next adventure. 


Get to know Darshan! 


What is your favorite movie?

Everything Everywhere All At Once or Avengers: Infinity War or Split… I can’t choose.


Describe your dream vacation. 

I want to visit Spain, Japan, or London. I don’t care which one because they all seem interesting.


Who is your role model?

I have three role models, the bald trio if you may: Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Vin Diesel, and Pitbull. They all embody the purest traits of human nature: the grind, family, and passion. 


What is something nobody knows about you?

I’ve watched chess since the pandemic, and I just started playing it earlier this year, though I’m not great at it yet. 


If you were trapped on a deserted island, what three things would you bring?

I would bring a gigantic jug of water, a Swiss army knife, and Elon Musk. Throw in a Chuck E. Cheese too. 


What will you miss about RMA?

The small, interactive classes and overall RMA community. 


What is your funniest story at RMA?

Joddism–if you know, you know. 


What is one piece of advice you’d give to an incoming freshman?

Try to be a well-rounded student. Instead of putting all your effort into academics, maybe try spreading your effort into academics, athletics, and/or a hobby. 


What class would you take again, and why?

I would retake freshman Biology since my class was filled with lots of friends, and Ms. Lehnes is a fun teacher.