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Alumni Spotlight

Megan Cronan '05

Megan Cronan 8th Grade

Megan Cronan ’05 attended ACDS from the 4-year-old program through 8th grade. After attending Presentation High School, she graduated from Santa Clara University in 2013 with a degree in civil engineering.  She is a Professional Engineer (PE) and received the American Public Works Emerging Leader Award. Megan currently works as a senior civil engineer for HMH, a land development and engineering company in San Jose.  Megan was the project civil engineer on the Westfield Valley Fair mall expansion. She was recently selected as the project manager for the VTA Phase II Bart Extension, which includes, among other things, four stations and a five mile tunnel.

Megan’s favorite ACDS tradition was the Fund Run (which she thought for years was called the "Fun Run"), initially because she loved running with her big buddy, and then later with her little buddy. Running eventually turned into a lifelong love for her.

She also loved the middle school dances but will never forget having to be lured out of the bathroom by a teacher during the Halloween dance because she was terrified of the clown who stood at the entrance.

Megan will always appreciate the relationship that she forged with Mrs. SooHoo, her fourth-grade teacher, who was fun, encouraging, and supportive throughout her time at ACDS. When mentoring new engineers, Megan thinks about how Mrs. Soohoo gave her the self-esteem and self-understanding to properly represent herself and her career accomplishments. Drama also played a big role in her development. Megan says that as a shy student, being in Mrs. Curtis's plays every year helped her develop her public speaking skills and learn how to be collaborative and take risks.
 
Her advice to current ACDS students is to take advantage of all of the opportunities available and to try different electives because you may discover something new to like, or a hidden skill. She encourages prospective parents to send their students to ACDS. Megan says that she has fond memories and was well-prepared for high school.

ACDS is proud of our alumni and their accomplishments. Below are a few more alumni spotlights that show just a small sample of the exciting paths they forged after graduating from ACDS.  Please contact us to share your ACDS alumni story.

More Alumni Spotlights...

Matt Hunt '12

Matt Hunt attended Almaden Country Day School from Kindergarten through 8th grade and is a member of the Class of 2012. He attended Archbishop Mitty High School and went on to earn a Bachelor of Science in Motorsports Engineering with a minor in mathematics from Indiana University - Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) in 2021.

Matt’s proudest professional accomplishment is being part of the Indianapolis 500 Car Race this year (2022) and winning the IndyCar championship in 2021 with Chip Ganassi Racing. He worked on each car as a mechanic and engineer. 

Deena Shakir '00 and Laith Shakir '04

Deena Shakir is a successful business professional. She and her husband Mehdi have two children, 6-year-old Lana and 4-year-old Adam. She earned a joint BA in Social Studies and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard, and an MA from Georgetown's School of Foreign Service, funding her education through a variety of merit scholarships and side ventures, including co-founding her first company while in college. She is currently a partner at Lux Capital, a venture capital company focusing on emerging, futuristic ideas in science and technology investments. In addition, she is a lecturer in management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. 

Maxwell Love Snowboarding

Maxwell Love’19 is a vibrant, well-rounded learner whose resume-to-date belies his youth. As a junior at Oakwood School, he recently completed a research summer internship at UCLA into the analysis and remediation of cytotoxicity of cigarette smoke in the lungs. He will submit his resulting research report to the nationally renowned Davidson Fellow Scholarship and the Regeneron Science Talent Search. Maxwell also testified to the San Jose City Council on a high schooler’s perspective of the vaping epidemic, assisting in the successful effort to pass legislation banning flavored e-cigarettes.

Hannah Conradt '12

Hannah Conradt ’12 graduates from the Fashion Institute of Technology with a BFA in Special Occasion Fashion Design in 2022, but has experience and accolades that would rival a professional 10 years her senior. She has sewn costumes for Twenty Pilots including the iconic red cloak in their 2018 video Jumpsuit, and for Hailey Williams of the rock band, Paramore. Hannah has worked as a wardrobe assistant for a Lifetime movie in LA, helped costume an entire two-cast NYC-based production of the opera The Barber of Seville, and completed a summer internship in the Seattle Opera's costume department.

Hunter McKown

Hunter McKown '15 attended ACDS from the four-year-old program through 7th grade but left early to pursue high-level ice hockey. His greatest accomplishment to-date was earning a spot on the US National Development Team, a two-year program in the United States Hockey League. Their team won the gold medal at the 5-Nations tournament in Sweden in 2019. He earned a full-ride scholarship to play Division 1 hockey at Colorado College.

Megan Cronan '05

Megan Cronan ’05 attended ACDS from the 4-year-old program through 8th grade. After attending Presentation High School, she graduated from Santa Clara University in 2013 with a degree in civil engineering.  She is a Professional Engineer (PE) and received the American Public Works Emerging Leader Award. Megan currently works as a senior civil engineer for HMH, a land development and engineering company in San Jose.  Megan was the project civil engineer on the Westfield Valley Fair mall expansion. She was recently selected as the project manager for the VTA Phase II Bart Extension, which includes, among other things, four stations and a five mile tunnel.