The staff at High School Starleague would like to congratulate HSL scholar, Max Wei from Iolani High School, as he was the valedictorian for his graduating class of 2015. He continues his studies at Olin College of Engineering–ranked third for best undergraduate engineering programs by US News & World Report in 2014.


We caught up with Max Wei, who won first place for the 2014 HSL Essay Scholarship Competition and took home $500 in scholarship funding, as well as a six-month subscription to Loot Crate, $50 in J!NX gift cards, a MSI USA R9 270X Graphic Card, a MSI t-shirt, and a High School Starleague t-shirt.

Max Wei:

I’m truly grateful for the HSL competition and prizes – at the end of writing so many college essays, I was more than glad to write about how games impacted my life without worrying about winning or losing – I think I was really fortunate on so many fronts that things worked out the way they did.

Regarding the prizes, now I have dedicated gamer clothes to wear when streaming, and my rig is future-proofed for another few years!

My favorite videogame genre is platformers, my favorite series is Metroid, and I’m typically a big Nintendo fan.Some notable games that have extra meaning to me are Metroid Fusion, Super C, Pokemon Ruby, and the Smash Bros Series. Recently I’ve been playing Fire Emblem: Awakening, and Smash 3DS.

As for PC games, I usually play League of Legends, although only if I have friends online. Although critics might think games make people antisocial, my personal opinion is that it can help people connect. Like at random meetings, I’ll casually hear that someone plays league, and suddenly there’s a whole lot to talk about, ranging from pro players to funny stories.

At Olin College, I will be studying Mechanical engineering. partially inspired by some of the amazing fictitious inventions from video games. I hope to continue my gaming career by joining a local Smash Bros community, and playing League of Legends with my friends! Also, I did end up fulfilling one of the wishes in my essay – I finally managed to get a 3DS and recreate my Pokemon Ruby save file.

For more information about the 2014 HSL $1000 Essay Scholarship Competition, click here.