IRVINGTON, N.Y. -- Fraternal twins Sweta and Swati Narayan will graduate from Irvington High School as valedictorian and salutatorian, respectively.
“There has always been some friendly competition between us,” said Sweta. “Both of us are in many of the same classes and do many of the same activities, so this competition is inevitable. Nevertheless, I do think that this competition has been constructive, as it has always motivated both of us to work harder and do better.”
Sweta is older than Swati by 13 minutes. Both attribute their success to the ability to persevere through any challenge and expressed gratitude for unwavering encouragement and support from their parents.
Both sisters are members of Irvington High School's Model U.N. and Latin Club and have completed independent research for the school's Science Research Program.
Sweta performed with the school's pit orchestra while Swati founded and performed with Irvington's chamber ensemble.
Extracurricular activities for the twins include volunteering at Phelps Memorial Hospital, working with children with special needs and learning how to read, write and speak Sanskrit. Both also have performed the classical Indian dance the Bharatanatyam for more than a decade, performing it in India in February.
Sweta also was named National Merit Scholarship finalist this spring.
Swati shared some advice for incoming freshman.
“I would tell them that if they want to join a club, run for an office, start a club, take a class or participate in an activity, they should go for it because four years go by very quickly,” she said. “They should never let a perceived failure stop them from trying harder. There are going to be a lot of things in high school that are difficult and no one can be perfect at everything they do. However, if they let these ‘failures’ motivate them, then they will achieve a lot more than they ever thought they could.”
Both sisters also advised incoming freshman to never underestimate themselves and believe they can accomplish their goals.
Sweta will attend the University of Chicago while Swati will attend Amherst College. Both intend to major in biology.
The 2016 Irvington High School commencement ceremony takes place June 18.