From a very young age, I’ve had a strong understanding of the importance of community. I have been raised with a strong sense of family, commitment, and discipline, which has helped guide me in my personal development.
My sisters and I created our own nonprofit, Live Civilly, which is a youth service organization that encourages children ages 2-13 (and older) to give back to the community and help others. We opened our own food pantry, which to date, has served more than 150,000 meals to those in need within the community. Live Civilly has also spearheaded youth volunteer projects like: Environmental Elves, ExCELS snack program, a community service club for grades 4-6, among others.
I was first drawn to rowing when watching my older sister on the race course. This prompted me to start rowing during 7th grade, and getting involved with the high school team the summer after 8th grade. I enjoyed the sense of community on the team. Everyone’s individual effort had to come together in order to achieve our goals. My novice year, we advanced to nationals and became number 1 in New Jersey (novice). During winter training, my first year on the varsity team, I broke two club records, and was awarded the team “Hammer Award”, for top erg.
I strive to achieve balance within my life. I prioritize my academics, my rowing, my involvement in my church, in school activities (clubs and string orchestra), and a part time job on a local farm.
Rowing has become a confluence for me. It has provided me with a center point, from which I have developed better relationships with peers, coaches, teachers, and members of the community. I have developed better leadership skills. I have developed better work habits and have executive leadership functions.
I look forward to continuing my rowing career in college and becoming a part of a new community.