Senior Success Stories

James Thompson

University of Alabama
Computer Science and Musical Theater


James Thompson '17James Thompson ’17 was looking at two very different paths of study. His interest and experience in technology pulled him toward engineering, but his love of music called him to the theater. Ultimately, James chose University of Alabama, where he plans to double major in computer science and musical theater. University of Alabama is ranked Very Competitive by Barron’s Profiles of American Colleges.


“I didn’t really want to sit in a company and build things all day, so I wanted to see if I could pursue musical theater,” James said. “I needed something I could do between auditions and shows, and since I like to program, I could easily find side contracting work. I began looking at computer science and theater as a dual major. Then I received an email from University of Alabama with a great scholarship offer, and after looking into the programs, decided it was a good fit for me.”


In 2015, James was awarded the IB Scholarship for Summer Study. He traveled to Fiji, where he was certified as a PADI Open Water Diver and authorized to survey the health of coral reefs. During his time in Fiji, he met local families and learned more about their culture. James later earned an International Baccalaureate Diploma, scoring 36 overall with a 7 on the Physics HL exam — the highest score possible on an individual subject test.


“At the Academy, there is plenty of opportunity. This helped build interest and experience to really lock in this decision,” James said. During his Upper School years, James was a member of the Varsity Boys’ Soccer team, performed in the band and chorus ensembles, served as vice president for Tri-M Music Honor Society, and performed in four Upper School musical productions. At commencement, James received awards in math, science, technology, history, and music, and was recognized as the class valedictorian. James was also a National Merit Scholarship Finalist, a Comcast Leaders & Achievers award, a Carlisle Sentinel “Teen of the Week,” and earned an Eagle Scout ranking through Boy Scouts of America.

In college, James hopes to continue to play soccer and lead service projects along with pursuing opportunities on the stage.


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