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KCRG-TV9′s Student of the Month knows the recipe for success

Iowa City West High School Junior Aashika Gadkari started her own bakery. Besides brightening other’s days with treats, she also donates part of her profits.
Updated: May. 25, 2021 at 7:49 AM CDT
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - In between classes while learning at home, Iowa City West High School Junior Aashika Gadkari is mixing up something sweet. While maintaining a GPA of 4.2, and participating in a full schedule of extra circulars, Gadkari is also running her very own small business.

“She’s a small business owner which is pretty unique for anybody let alone a high school student,” said Iowa City West High Principal Mitch Gross.

Over the summer of 2020, with extra time during the pandemic, she began doing more baking.

“I just randomly added ingredients and hoped for the best,” Gadkari said.

That September, she launched her business. It’s called iCake.

“It’s a story that’s worth telling because it’s not every day that you have a student who comes up with an idea and then carries it through to fruition,” Principal Gross said.

She donates some of her profits to local organizations, including to the UI Dance Marathon to support child cancer patients. Gadkari is also working to send money to India, where her family is from, to help people suffering from coronavirus get oxygen. She’s also taken her cupcakes to nursing home staff and local healthcare centers.

“I remember going to nurses and going to staff and giving them the cupcakes and then when they saw them they looked so happy,” Gadkari said. “Just for one cupcake you can make someone’s whole day even their whole week.”

While her baking has some secret ingredients, she says the secret to success is with everyone.

“I think we all have a quality like that, sometimes we just have to unlock it,” Gadkari said. “She’s just been incredibly successful at everything she’s done,” Gross said.

For the future, Gadkari says her college choices and future plans have changed since she started her own business.

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