Neil Chowdhury

Year of Graduation: 
Neil Chowdhury

"The skills that Exeter has taught me in terms of communication … that’s one of the biggest ways I’ve grown."

Why Exeter?

I had heard it’s a great place to grow both academically and socially, and that there was a big community of people interested in math and science.


I came to Exeter for the high-quality content that I would get from the teachers, but what I found was that the students here help you learn just as much as the teachers. In math classes, and even in Math Club, we solve problems collaboratively. Oftentimes we might come to class not having the solution to one of the homework problems, but together as a class we'll put the pieces together and eventually get to the solution. Harkness is a really important part of my math classes.

Adult support

I'm grateful for all the support I've received from everyone. For my ninth- and 10th-grade year, my adviser was Mr. Hutchins, who works in Admissions. Whenever I needed anything, he would be there to help me. I could just call or text him.

Personal growth

When I arrived on campus, I was shy and not really comfortable talking to strangers. But as I participated in Harkness conversations, it felt more natural to interact with other people and talk to them. The skills that Exeter has taught me in terms of communication — Harkness, being respectful and listening to one another — that’s one of the biggest ways I’ve grown.


I participate in math competitions through Math Club, and I'm learning about a lot of different types of competitive math competitions. We have individual and team competitions where you get some time to solve a set of problems and your score is based on how many you answer correctly. The competitions are really engaging. And you can see where you are and how you can get better over time. 

Climate science

One of the biggest challenges facing the world is climate change and the inaction of our government. The younger generations, we’re going to have to step up to solve that issue. We'll need to be innovating and creating legislation to solve a problem that big. Exeter has, through climate action days and also curriculum, inspired us to think about this issue and about solutions. It’s something that I'm really interested in. I can see myself being a climate scientist or advocate someday.

Advice for prospective students
If you're looking for a place to interact with people from all over the world and engage with a new culture, and grow academically and socially, and gain some mental toughness, you should consider coming to Exeter.

Editor's note: Neil has been named one of 40 finalists in the 81st Regeneron Science Talent Search, America's oldest and most prestigious science and math competition for high school seniors. He will compete for the top prize — and $250,000 — in March 2022.