WISS Today Article

Alumni Feature – Asha Luevano 

“It is wonderful to see Asha back in Shanghai as she is doing online studying in her first year of college. Asha is enrolled in the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, and surely she will succeed as she has grown into a confident, kind, and knowledgeable young adult.  Asha left a huge mark on WISS as she was outstanding year after year. It was an honor having her in the IBDP HL music class; her energy and remarkable musicianship were a positive influence on everybody around her.”

“Asha was awarded the Director’s Colors for Music after completing an extraordinary journey in our school. She also looked for infinite opportunities to give back to the community volunteering and getting involved in many projects; her CAS portfolio was one of the most complete ever.”

We wish her all the best as she pursues her studies and brings the name of WISS far beyond.” – Nicolas Elguea, Director of Performing Arts at WISS.

Asha in the Music Classroom at WISS
Asha playing the piano in the music classroom at WISS

Name: Asha Luevano 

Years at WISS:  2006 – 2019

Graduated: Class of 2018   

Hometown: California 

Currently: Boston    

What impact did your time at WISS have on you?   

I would say that WISS taught me how to be open-minded, you’re able to interact with people from so many different cultures and that is something that is so unique to the expat life in Shanghai and being a third culture kid here. 

Especially at WISS, I think our community is so strong, so you really just feel like you have a big family here. I definitely took that to university with me. 

I tried to make as many friends as possible and stay open-minded with being a risk-taker, being a caring student. Growing up as an IB student, the principles are ingrained into my brain now (so I definitely took that with me).

Asha at the Western International School of Shanghai

What were the highlights of your time at WISS?   

Definitely a lot of the productions. I think since I was in 1st grade till 12th grade I did almost every single production, except one or two. 

In our big WISS community, there were always the theater groups and music groups. But when we were doing the productions everybody just came together, worked as a whole collaborative (team) to produce something so incredible. 

You came together as a team no matter what country you’re from, no matter what your interest was, there was the lighting and then people performing and the art students doing the painting, the sets… That was the highlight.

Asha showing her picture of the Secondary Winter Concert at WISS
Asha showing her picture performing at the Secondary Winter Concert at WISS

What are you doing now, and what are your career goals?   

I’m currently studying at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. I am planning to double major, so I’ll be studying Vocal Performance and Music Business (which is great). 

In music there are a lot of different ways you can go, you can be a recording artist, record your music which is also what I want to do. Or you can go more into a business side, like marketing or communications.

So I want to get a feel for both sides of the industry and then decide which one I want to do or put my knowledge from both of them into my own career. I am also very interested in music therapy, music education, and perhaps interning at a record label, but I don’t know, there is a lot that I want to do.

Hopefully, I will get to all of it, I’ll get to experience all sides of the music industry. But I think my main goal in life is to bring joy to people that listen to my music or bring joy to people that I interact with.

Asha in the Black Box theatre room at WISS.
Asha in the Black Box Theatre Room at WISS.

What advice would you give to current WISS students as they’re looking ahead to college and careers?   

Cherish your time here at WISS because college can be very challenging and I got used to our community here. So it’s very hard to leave everyone you know already.

Cherish your time here, but also when you’re going into the future make sure you remember the things that WISS taught you because even though it seems like everyday life here, some people outside of our community don’t have the same background as we do.

It’s important to share what you know, but also be open-minded and take in from other people.

What would you tell a parent who is considering sending their child to attend WISS? 

I would say: do it.  I made my lifelong friends here and I was lucky enough to grow up with my best friend. We were in first grade together and we graduated together here, so I have known her for thirteen-fourteen years now.