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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

Claire Mast’s passion for her community has enabled her to travel to far corners of the country

Senior Claire Mast has traveled to far corners of the country to help local communities

Senior Claire Mast is quite an ambitious traveler. 

In the past, her travels have taken her to far corners of the country, stretching from the South’s dominating mountains to summer camps in the East where she has had opportunities to serve the community around her while immersing herself in a new, uncharted environment.

“Currently, we are planning a trip to Yellowstone,” Claire said. “I’ve been on a couple of trips with them—I went on a backpacking trip to New Mexico, kind of like a big summer camp [in] West Virginia, and then this summer I’m going to the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota.”

“A lot of it is the group getting to know each other and understanding how to work as a team. So, forming the group and knowing people’s strengths and weaknesses.”

— Claire Mast

As an involved member of the Boy Scouts of America (Scouts BSA)—a local co-ed organization that emphasizes community service—Claire has had unique opportunities to explore the country while helping local communities in the area with various tasks. Typically, Scouts BSA focuses on nearby projects to benefit the community, but Claire’s participation in the Venturing Program with the older scouts has enabled her to advance her passion for service even further. 

This year, Claire plans to take a trip that requires months of planning and preparation.

“I just started training for the Boundary Waters,” Claire said. “The first half is service, and then the second half is a week and a half of just canoeing and the adventure itself. I’m trying to figure out how to plan for manual labor.”

This July, Claire’s trip to the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota will challenge her teamwork abilities and capacity to cooperate with other individuals from the ages of sixteen to twenty-one as they canoe, hike, and camp in the expansive wilderness that thrives in the northern part of the country.

For this trip, Claire will be going through the service corp; because her trips focus on both the experience and service, the current project the group has planned involves trail maintenance, construction, and building, all of which are activities that require preparation and expertise to execute. 

In the past, Claire has done local trail projects through Scouts BSA, the closest one being at a special needs summer camp called Indian Trails, where she helped widen and tidy up the existing trails. This experience, coupled with the work she has done with her dad—who is involved with landscaping—and the team-bonding activities she has participated in, will give her the background she needs to take on her trip to the Boundary Waters.

“A lot of it is the group getting to know each other and understanding how to work as a team,” Claire said. “So, forming the group and knowing people’s strengths and weaknesses.”

Teamwork is an imperative part of surviving in a group setting, especially in one as unique as paddling across the waters in Minnesota or hiking peaks in New Mexico. 

The scout program has been part of her life since her brother joined the year she was born, and after five years of actively participating in Scouts BSA, Claire has gained knowledge of what it takes to successfully form bonds with new people and create lifelong friendships.

“I’ve found quite a few friends,” Claire said. “Some of them have moved—I have friends in Florida, and some of them are older, so I have friends in college. I do service projects with them, and I just love doing service projects [for fun]. I have really cool connections [with] some of my friends. Some people are in Spain, and then getting to know people from different levels.”

Claire’s connection with the world has broadened her viewpoint of new cultures and ways of life, overall equipping her with indispensable skills that are hard to acquire anywhere else. Her tree-planting projects with the Department of State, participation in Kids Food Basket, and countless other service activities support her message that everyone can set aside a fraction of time to focus on giving back to the community.  

“I think that traveling is good to see other cultures and understand the beauties of the world around you,” Claire said. “[With] service, there is always someone who needs more than you, and you always have more time than you think you do.”

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About the Contributor
Lucy Yoder
Lucy Yoder, Staff Writer
Lucy is a senior entering her first year writing for The Central Trend. She has been entertained and positively in love with writing and reading for as long as she can remember and cannot wait to expand and improve her writing further. Lucy runs varsity track for her school and has been involved with club track over the years as well. As senior year starts and concludes all too quickly, Lucy strives to create millions of memories, all comprised of her favorite things: friends, sunshine, running, and her adorable puppy, Jackie. Favorite artist: Taylor Swift, without a doubt Favorite soccer team: FC Barcelona Car: 2005 Lexus GX470 named Lucifer Favorite place she's been: Galápagos Islands

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