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The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

The Student Voice of Forest Hills Central

The Central Trend

Zack Race has found life through a skillset of technical thinking and creativity

Zacks+gaming+set+up%3B+he+spends+hours+upon+hours+perfecting+the+Environment.
Zack’s gaming set up; he spends hours upon hours perfecting the Environment.

In just a short few years, like the blink of an eye, senior Zack Race has gone from having a basic knowledge of the digital world to forging his very own universe through a unique and professional manner of creative thinking. 

“So I got into the basics of YouTube [posting] and editing software,” Zach said. “Then eventually I got into it for my dad, he was like ‘Have you tried the hardware side of it?’ I never really heard the word ‘hardware’ unless it came with other technology pieces.”

During his early school years, Zack had always shown an interest in all things tech and computer science related. The desire to have an independent life drew him deep into learning about the skills needed for running a YouTube channel. 

This year, as well as last, Zack has attended classes that allow him to stretch his limits and explore different fields leading to his eventual career after graduation. 

“I am in my second year of KCTC’s [Kent Career Tech Center], cybersecurity and IT class,” Zach said. “In the first year, we learned the basics of computers and whatnot. Then we did certifications for Microsoft. We built [various contraptions relating to technology], and we coded. We practiced and all sat down and had conversations on the week’s topic.”

His class at KCTC involves working and collaborating in teams, performing jobs, and overcoming odds. Zack’s current status is Assistant Chief of Staff on a team of workers called Pentagon.

“KCTC does not have an end-year goal, we don’t do exams,” Zach said, “but what we do is our grades have been split into segments. This helps build experience to have Professional certifications leading to internships and jobs.”

Zack applies to and learns more about certifications in various jobs so that after graduating, he can apply for internships and higher levels careers that require additional experience. In this way, Zack has already built an excellent foundation for the rest of his life. 

Zack admits that during his childhood, he was not in the best position to achieve these high-flying goals. During COVID Zack came to realize that the rocky path he was trekking would be unable to provide the perfect conditions for personal growth. He wanted a bright future, and to do so, he needed to make some adjustments, as did the rest of his class of 2024 classmates. 

At the end of the day, you make it hard for yourself. That’s what KCTC has taught me, which is to try and do things on the fly.

— Zack Race

“[My] brain was always, oh eventually I’ll make it to high school knowing what to do,” Zach said. “Once you’re in high school, you don’t know what you want to do. Once you are in your final years, you start to ask ‘what do I actually want [as a career]?”

It was hard, and to grow from knowing basic software and video editing to professional technician was very daunting. Like standing at the bottom of a mountain, hiking gear in hand knowing full well the only way to get there was taking a first step. 

However, to his surprise, Zack learned that he wasn’t just capable, but the leap of faith proved that he could in fact fly higher than he ever imagined. With his computer, keyboard, and mouse, Zack started to trailblaze, turning his life into everything he envisioned. 

“Life is not a joke,” Zach said. “What we do will have an impact on our lives. We won’t have anyone to come rescue us. We have to figure it out on our own and grow up in the real world. As I’ve slowly gotten a job, I don’t want my parents doing all this for me anymore. I want to do it on my own because I know I can’t fully rely on anyone when I am all grown up.”

Independence is something his parent have shown him to value, and in doing so, Zack can now confidently say he can do what he once called impossible. From a kid who didn’t understand social interaction, to a young adult mistaken for a personal IT for his parents. 

“If someone was interested in technology, I’d tell them that don’t think you can’t do it if you don’t try. Because technology is very easy to learn. You don’t have to build cables, punch holes in walls, make a server, or set up a router.”

With as little skill as Zack had when he first started, he wants his story to prove that learning something as complex as technology is still doable. All he had to do was push himself, with the want to create his future and commit a drive that would change the world around him. 

“At the end of the day, you make it hard for yourself,” Zach said. “That’s what KCTC has taught me, which is to try and do things on the fly. And to also not stress it because eventually, we all make it through the hard times.”

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About the Contributor
Mikayla Bush, Staff Writer
Mikayla is a senior striving for a career in writing and artistry. She takes inspiration from books, media, nature, and even music. Camping, hiking, and running are all favorite pastimes of hers.  She also tries her darndest to deliver strong opinion-based pieces that prompt readers to question anything and everything and hope to even change some minds. What type of books does she want to write? Fantasy, sci-fi, dystopia. I can't read books accounting for the story of some average person. That's called asking a stranger for their life story. What is her favorite place to camp? A state park in the Upper Peninsula, McClain State Park, is just off the shore of Lake Superior. What's her favorite time of the year? Second fall, no not the first where it's still hot with a tiny bit of color. It needs to be cold enough that drinking hot apple cider is life-giving.

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    ZackarySep 27, 2023 at 8:46 pm

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