The first time he stepped foot in Concord Academy, Nuo Wen Lei ’22 was immediately struck by how unfiltered the sky was. “In Shanghai, you look above the first level of any building and you just see a skyscraper,” Nuo Wen, a boarding student from China, recalls. “Here, the sky is massive!”

Four years later, Nuo Wen is now involved in a multitude of activities. Arriving at CA as an impressive tennis player, he took up squash his freshman year. Since then, Nuo Wen has grown to become a star in both sports, focusing on squash during the winter and tennis during the spring and summer. “I like racket sports just in general. Hitting the ball just feels very nice,” he explains, in regards to his passion. 

In addition to his athletic interests, Nuo Wen is also an avid coder. He is a co-head of both the programming and robotics clubs, the latter of which he co-founded sophomore year. While Nuo Wen mainly codes in Python, he has been, in his own words, “branching out” over the past few years, experimenting with Javascript, HTML, and CSS. Nuo Wen has been able to incorporate programming into his academic life as well. For Kim Frederick’s Mapping Boston history course, he created a website that aggregated the residency data of Shanghai for his final project. This allowed viewers to compare the price distributions and ages of homes while simultaneously viewing how the city developed over the years. 

Nuo Wen credits his expansive extracurricular profile to a willingness to explore. “Be daring in taking opportunities outside of CA,” he advises. “To have interests outside of school and be willing to dedicate time to them […] just feels good.” Nuo was able to leverage the additional flexibility granted to him by the pandemic year to explore novel activities, as well as develop many of his already existing skills.

During his free time, Nuo Wen enjoys watching basketball, particularly the Golden State Warriors and Milwaukee Bucks, and the two teams’ respective superstars, Steph Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo. He also enjoys playing and watching Smash, especially top players, whose games he describes as “intense and calculated.” Anime is another hobby of his. Nuo Wen lists Attack on Titan, Demon Slayer, and To Your Eternity as a couple of his recommendations for potential viewers. 

When asked for a piece of advice he would provide to future students, Nuo Wen said, “You don’t [necessarily] have to find your place [within the CA community], you don’t have to feel like you’re definitely somewhere. You just kind of roll with it.” Ultimately though, Nuo Wen cherishes his time at CA, replying with an emphatic “Absolutely!” when asked if he enjoyed his time here.