Blonde, purple, and blue are just a few colors that senior Natalie Sweeney has dyed her sister’s hair.
Natalie’s career path had been set in the direction of cosmetology ever since her freshman year of high school. About a week ago, her path veered in a different direction; she wants to plunge into the depths of earning her degree as a nutritionist.
“I don’t know what made me switch, but I think there’s just more opportunities,” Natalie said. “I can see myself in the physical aspect. My sister’s friend is also going into nutrition and therapy.”
A year or so ago, Natalie worked at a hair salon for a few months which is one place where her inspiration sparked for her initial career path. Natalie thought she had her future figured out until she discovered that she wanted to earn her degree in nutrition. Natalie’s friend and sister’s friend are both involved in the nutrition career.
After completing her degree in nutrition, Natalie has a goal set to open up her own business so she can fill duo roles as a nutritionist and a therapist. This field sparked from more curiosity than anything else; Natalie’s goal is to “dig deeper” and find out the science behind anything nutritionist related.
Leaping from cosmetology to nutrition is quite the change-up. Natalie’s parents were more than supportive when she told them about her bold, swift switch of career choice.
“They’re so happy I’m not blocking off my opportunities for everything,” Natalie said.
Not only are her parents supportive of her, but they are also considered her best friends. Natalie’s relationship with her parents is just as close as the one she shares with her sister. Natalie deems her sister as her role model, and she is the one person she looks up to. She’s the one person Natalie takes an example from, and she is inspired by her older sister’s outlook on life. She is overjoyed that she has her sister by her side.
“There’s nothing that really stands out to me but probably just the way my parents shaped me out to be,” ” Natalie said. “My parents have always taught me right from wrong. They always use [their upbringing] as a way for them to be above and beyond from what they had. They always try to make things good at our house.”
Aside from her future, she loves bonding with her best friends. Spur of the moment drives with her best friends are one of their favorite things to do with each other, even if they do not have a destination in mind. They have a tradition where they drive up to Lansing just to get Dunkin’ Donuts coffee. Overall, just about anything makes them click.
“Kelley, we met in seventh grade in choir class, and we would always get in trouble for talking too much, and then we became best friends, and our sophomore year we all started hanging out,” Natalie said.
Natalie’s life of role models and career path changes are not the only things that have shaped her into who she is today and what she continues to be. Natalie’s best friends have made a substantial, positive impact on her life.
“I’ve been friends with Jessica Hurbanis ever since I was in second grade, “Natalie said. “We actually met because I was jealous of her tracksuit—she had the Justice one, and I had the Children’s Place one—and we’ve been best friends ever since. [Abby Stachowiak and I] met at dance, also in fifth-grade. We’ve been friends ever since; we’ve all gone through a lot together. We’ve all just helped each other out.”
Positive vibes are a prominent occurrence in Natalie’s life coming from both her family and her tight-knit friends. Out of the three of them, Kelley and she have been friends the longest.
“They’re my support system in a way,” Natalie said. “If I don’t have my sister to fall back on, for instance, then I have my friends to fall back on, and it’s the same way for them. They always have me to fall back on.”