Pedaling to Success

Sophomore Aditya Jha was one of four recipients for the Make a Change Grant.


Olivia Liegl

Sophomore Aditya Jha was awarded a mini grant for his cycling club by South Windsor Youth and Family Services and the South Windsor Alliance for Families on April 21st.

Sophomore Aditya Jha applied for, and was awarded, a mini grant from the South Windsor Youth and Family Services and the South Windsor Alliance for Families on April twenty first. 

Jha is the founder of the Cycling Club, a club for both middle and high school students in South Windsor. 

The Cycling Club’s goal is to give students the opportunity to have a bike ride with their peers and friends at least once a month, and get outside and enjoy the fresh air. 

It feels really good to support something I’m very passionate about

— sophomore Aditya Jha, recipient of the mini grant




When applying for said grant, Jha was able to enlist the support of those in his club, so it was a collaborative effort.

“It was really great because I got officers and other people to help out.”

This grant can help fund future biking trips and inspire more people to join the club. 

For future advice to others applying for a grant similar to this, Jha said, “One piece of advice I give to others applying is to be confident in your idea, and that your idea has value, start early and get approved by the administration.” 

…be confident in your idea, and believe that your idea has value

— Aditya Jha

His family and friends are very proud and supportive of Aditya, and are excited to see what the future holds for the success and growth of himself, his accomplishments, and his club. 

Inside and outside of school, Jha is passionate about designing and launching rockets and also is involved in the TEMS robotics program with teacher Mr. Goric. In participating in this program, he helps mentor and inspire TEMS students to pursue their passions and continue them into their high school years. 

There were two other recipients of the MAC grant. At Philip R. Smith Elementary School, Mrs. LaRosa’s 4th grade classroom students decided they would like to read the book Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea.

“They hope to raise awareness of truth, learn how emotions affect our mental health, get to know other people’s perspectives and become better listeners,” explained Reed.

The 4th grade class plans to create and perform skits for the 3rd grade classes at their school. With the grant funds, the class will purchase a copy of the book for each 3rd grade class, and for the book vending machine in the building.

Additionally, at Eli Terry Elementary School, two fourth graders, Chase Perrachio and Nathan Ottey requested money to purchase basketball hoops that were lower to the ground. “At recess, the basketball hoops get very crowded because it is a popular activity,” said Reed. Perrachio and Ottey identified this as an issue for their friends with disabilities.

“The two students showed such caring for all their friends and requested the grant money to purchase a lower to the ground, accessible basketball hoop so that everyone could safely play together.”