extracurriculars Highlights from Matthew Zhang


  • Member of the Iowa Young Writer’s Studio (IYWS), 2021 Summer
    A prestigious writing summer camp with less than 5% acceptance rates

  • Member of the Between the Lines (BTL) International Writing Program, 2020 Summer
    Hosted by the University of Iowa for a cultural exchange program that focuses on the art and craft of creative writing.

  • Issued by Scholastic Art & Writing Awards

Community Service Leadership



Speech and Debate

  • Public Forum Debate Rankings
    Issued by National Speech And Debate Association (NSDA) · Aug 2021

    New Jersey State Rank:
    #1 partnership, #2 individual debater

    United States (national) Rank:
    #2 partnership, #5 individual debater

  • Issued by Tournament of Champions · Apr 2020

  • Semifinalist in Public Forum at the 2022 NCFL Grand National tournament 
  • Placed in the top 10 out of hundreds of teams from around the world in this global debate competition

  • 2x qualifier to the NSDA National Championship Tournament
    3x qualifier to the National Catholic Forensic League Grand National Tournament
    3x qualifier to the Tournament of Champions:
    10 career TOC bids, only 1% of all high school debaters qualify for the TOC
  • National Circuit Debate Tournament Accolades

Other Leadership Activities and Awards

  •  Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony Award from University of Rochester, June 2022
    Demonstrated commitment to understanding and addressing difficult social issues;
    Leadership and dedication to community action;
    Strong grades and rigorous courses taken in the humanities and social sciences
  • Elected Vice President of LHS Student Government Association ,  June 2022 – June 2023
  • Cornell University Book Award, June 2022
    The Cornell University Book Award is given to an outstanding student in the junior class who exemplifies the initiative, integrity and excellence in an environment of collegiality, civility and responsible stewardship
  • President of National Honor Society, Livingston High School chapter, elected April 2022 –
    Founded in 1921, the National Honor Society recognizes outstanding high school students who have demonstrated commitment to four principles: scholarship, leadership, service, and character. More than one million high school students participate in NHS related activities today.
  • Class of 2023 Officer
    Livingston High School Student Government Association, Sep 2019 – Jun 2021
    Livingston, New Jersey, United States
  • Youth Group Fellowship Leader
    Chinese Christian Church of New Jersey,  Jul 2020 – Present
    Parsippany, New Jersey, United States
  • Co-Founder and Curriculum Director
    International Youth Debate Initiative, Jul 2020 – Present
    A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, which addresses disparate access to debate education through quality, free debate camps, mentorship, articles, resources, and more.
  • Reflection on Sept. 11 , Livingston Honors Sept. 11 Victims at 21st Annual Remembrance Ceremony
  • Heritage Middle School graduation speech, 2019 June
  • Hillside Elementary School graduation speech, 2016 June
    Present of Student Council