I have always loved challenging myself both academically and athletically and look forward to continuing this in college. I am planning on studying Exercise Science and Sports Psychology to pursue a future career in Sports Therapy. I started running at a very young age, raising money for a charity organization known as PPMD, in honor of my cousin, Danny Garofalo, who passed away in 2018. Danny had been wheelchair-bound since age eight and running felt like my chance to do what he could not. Each of my races is run with a piece of my cousin's racing shirt pinned by my heart to continually motivate me and raise the bar higher. While my Cross Country and Track and Field team are like my family, I also know that only I can be held accountable for how I perform. I have not stopped training my hardest, even despite the unfortunate situation placed on student athletes during the COVID-19 Pandemic. When my Junior Cross Country season was cancelled by my school (One of 10 schools in NJ), I sought out independent races so that I could provide times for college coaches to see. My training has only become more intense and meticulous as I continue my high school career, and I aim to continue to improve my upper limits in regards to how I train and race. My freshman year in high school, I was a three-time varsity athlete, and went to sectionals in all three seasons. During my sophomore year, I ran a PR of 16:41 in cross country, missing the cutoff for Groups by just two places among a field of juniors and seniors. This success, along with achieving All County First Team, opened my eyes to the fact that with continued dedication and drive I could compete at a higher level. Junior year has been marked with a 16:10 cross country time, a 15:32 track 5K, and the honor of receiving All-County recognition despite being an independent athlete. Running is my life, and has helped me push through hardships I've faced and kept me strong in difficult times. As a coachable athlete who takes pride in my grit, dedication, and hardwork, this passion I have for running leaves me with no doubt that I would love to continue to pursue a running career in college and beyond.