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The Tech Whiz

Proud Banana Slug, accomplished techie, avid outdoorsman, merry prankster

Morgan Culp ’07 credits a school prank for setting him on his career path. Morgan is in his fourth year at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where he’s majoring in information system information management. His studies fuse technology, information systems, and business management—a mix that undoubtedly will position him for success in the burgeoning info-tech field.

But let’s get back to the prank. While at Wildwood’s upper school, Morgan and his buddies decided the school computers needed more interesting screen savers. So they hacked the system. “I was just a kid poking around,” says Morgan. “We created all sorts of havoc.”

If he had been at another school, Morgan’s prank would have landed him in hot water. But he was fortunate: At Wildwood, his talent was recognized rather than punished.

“I remember the tech administrator saying to me, ‘I can see you have some talent,’” Morgan recalls. “He put my friends and me in charge of the first student tech group. We became the eyes and ears of the campus for all things related to tech.”

Morgan parlayed that experience into an internship with Generation IX in his junior and senior years. The technology systems company set him to work on “old, junk computers” and challenged him to get them running—which he accomplished. “I got my feet wet with technology at Wildwood,” he says. “It’s something I like and something I’m good at.”

Morgan came to Wildwood as a 7th grader with the help of financial aid. The middle and upper school campus had opened a year earlier, making Morgan and his class Wildwood pioneers. Among his favorite memories is playing on the varsity soccer team for four years.

“The unique thing about Wildwood is that it’s small, so you can explore a lot of things, like soccer and technology,” he says. “If I had gone to a traditional high school, I don’t think I would have been able to balance all my interests the way I did at Wildwood.”

He is acutely aware of how financial aid made it all possible. Morgan acknowledges that the opportunities he had at Wildwood allowed him to go on to UC Santa Cruz.

“If I could meet the Annual Fund donors in person, I’d say a million times, thank you. In fact, a simple thank you isn’t enough, because words can’t convey what financial aid has meant to me,” says Morgan. “One day, that’s something I’m going to do: pay it forward, so someone like me can have the experience I had.”

Every year, more than 100 kids benefit from financial aid and the opportunities that come with a Wildwood education. Your Annual Fund contribution makes it possible. Click here to make your gift of pledge.

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