Student Spotlight for Jan. 5: Megan Padgett

OlympianJanuary 5, 2014 

Age: 16.

Schools: River Ridge High School in Lacey and South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia.

Grade: 11.

Parents: Michelle Hutchens and Jason Padgett.

Best personal achievement: It might have been a long time ago, but I still remember it. I was one of the youngest people to win a gold President’s Education Award at the age of 5 in kindergarten.

How I spend my time: Despite a sometimes busy schedule, I like to indulge in my passion of music by voluntarily joining my high school choir on my days off, as well as relax at home by watching Japanese animation (anime). I am also in three clubs: SkillsUSA at River Ridge, and the Tomodachi (Japanese Friends) club and the student Nursing Club at SPSCC.

Favorite subjects: I have a variety of classes that I love; it’s hard to choose. I really enjoy learning the Japanese language and include that in my passion for singing. As for academics, I enjoy life sciences, such as biology and anatomy.

Favorite movie: “Les Miserables.”

Favorite book: “Night” by Elie Wiesel.

Dream job: I have had an interest in helping people since I was born, but I never really knew how until my best friend took me to downtown Olympia, where they feed the homeless every week. After meeting the people and hearing about the physical and emotional adversities they had faced, I knew my dream was to open a homeless health care center right here in Olympia.

Someone I respect: My high school choir teacher Kelley Morgan is the strongest, funniest and kindest person I have ever met. She has treated me and the rest of her students like her own children from the minute we met her. She always has her best foot forward and a smile on her face.

The hardest part of being a student is: Staying motivated when in a rut of emotional stress. Many people don’t realize that being a student can be time-consuming, exhausting and overwhelming. Sometimes keeping your head up and getting what needs to be done, finished, is a difficult task.

My ambitions or career aspirations include: Becoming an obstetrics/gynecology nurse. Ever since freshmen year, after taking a child development class, I knew I wanted to do something to help women who are pregnant and their children before, during and after birth. I believe it is my calling.

Someone famous I would like to meet: Adam Lambert has been an idol of mine since I was about 12. Not just because of his glamorous style and amazing singing ability, but also because he is so open, unashamed and willing to stand up for what he believes in. It’s truly inspiring.

Someday, looking back on my life, I’ll be able to say: “My parents were absolutely right!” I can tell you in the future, both near and far, I’m going to be repeating the exact same sentence.

Biggest challenge facing teenagers today: Not being able to truly accept ourselves for who we are, instead of how everyone wants us to be. Everyone has an idea of what they want to be, but some people allow outside forces to control their thoughts about themselves, making them believe they are not worthy of respect or love. Everyone deserves to feel wanted, loved and needed by both others and themselves.

One thing in the world I would change if I could: Open up the hearts of those who don’t accept others. To truly have peace in this world, we all must respect each other for our beliefs, pasts, lifestyles and for whom we love. We are all humans of the same descent, no matter what you believe in. Why can’t we all try to accept and respect each other?

Nominated by: Advanced Placement world history teacher Robert Campbell, who wrote, “Megan is goal-orientated, well-rounded and has a positive outlook on River Ridge and her community. She excels in all of her academic classes in high school and has begun Running Start classes in pursuit of a nursing career. She places a high value on the educational process and routinely volunteers her services outside the school day.”

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