Salutatorian 2016: Declan McNamara

Sofia Godinez '17

Declan McNamara has had a strong work ethic since he was a kid. “Growing up with a twin has always made me pretty competitive.  Always having someone comparable right next to you inherently inspires a strong urge to accomplish any given task to the best of your ability,” he says.  Thank you Owen for inspiring him to work hard! However, McNamara adds, “I don’t work hard for others but for myself.” McNamara’s main goal in life is to live without any “what if’s”, so to him it doesn’t matter if he ends up failing at something because at least he gave it a shot.

One of McNamara’s favorite quotes by Robert H. Schuller is, “Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation.” This quote really speaks to him because he believes that success comes from hard work. Nothing happens without having worked for it, and that is what sets McNamara apart. His work behind the scenes has helped him gain all of his accomplishments. “Though it’s been tough, it’s rewarding to see it all come into fruition,” McNamara states.  

“People know me generally as being very science/math orientated, but really my biggest goal is to write a book someday. I’d like to write something meaningful that really has a positive impact on people the way some books have affected me.” McNamara  says about something that not a lot of people know about him.

McNamara would like to thank his family for supporting him. He wouldn’t be able to attend Benet if it weren’t for his father’s hard work and his mother’s love and care. His brother Owen has been a great companion for all four years, and he has always been very reliable. “I also have to thank my entire lunch table, who have been great friends for all four years here, as well as Mr. Bill Kohne, my freshman year math teacher who really inspired me to pursue the subject,”  McNamara adds.  

McNamara has lots of advice to share, but his most important piece is to take advantage of all the opportunities offered at Benet. “Having good grades is important, but truly my most rewarding experiences at Benet have been outside of the classroom,” he continues, “Don’t let your studies consume you to the point where you’re missing out on the abundance of clubs and activities Benet has, but at the same time don’t overextend yourself to the point where your grades suffer.” In the end, what McNamara wants to share with all of us to embrace is to find the perfect balance between school and outside activities.

McNamara  will be attending the University of Chicago in the fall with his brother. Here he is planning on majoring in applied mathematics. Thanks Declan McNamara for leaving behind a fabulous legacy and best of luck in the future!