Sophomore Lauren Brace has immersed herself in a motley of diverse extracurricular activities and passions that have shaped her life.
“Ever since I was little, I’ve loved to sing,” Lauren said. “It’s been a passion of mine since I can’t remember when.”
Lauren’s colorful choice of activities started early in 4th-6th grade, including singing. They reflect her creative and unique personality which stages how she is looked at as she grows up in school. And beyond her passion for singing, she is involved in theatre, Odyssey of the Mind, student council, and the marching band.
Participating in various school-related activities have exposed her to meet friends who are passionate about similar things. This has helped her find her space in school, especially beneficial to Lauren as she has two more years ahead of her in high school. In particular, Lauren has found her space in the theatre program.
“So far, I’ve been involved in the musicals Honk!, Footloose, and FHC’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame,” Lauren said. “Each one has been so different, but they’ve all brought me the thrilling feeling of telling an awesome story through performance.”
Lauren’s early start in theatre has set her up for top-notch experience she won’t need to learn later in life. Even in this chaotic and challenging year, Lauren has been able to snatch a few roles in this year’s fall play: The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon.
“Not only do I get to play three different characters,” Lauren said, “I also get to share the stage with some of the most wonderful and talented people I have ever met.”
Not only is Lauren involved in the fall school play this year, but she has also taken up an essential role in the student council. She hopes that this will be another passion of hers and it will expose her to a new group of people at school, and, despite its differing responsibilities from the play, she still finds a way to be able to express herself creatively.
“This year, I was elected to be on the Student Council, and that has also been a cool experience,” Lauren said. “Everyone is super creative and has really great ideas to contribute. When we collaborate, it’s amazing the amount of work we can get done during just one hour on a zoom meeting.”
With the involvement of being on the student council, Lauren has the power to help change her sophomore year experience. The act of early immersion into school-related activities has brought to light more of the positives of not only her sophomore year but high school as a whole.
“This year, especially, we’ve had to think outside the box to work around the restrictions,” Lauren said. “It’s really cool to have a voice in the big events [at] our school.”
This year is a pivotal time for the student council because of COVID-19 and its restrictions; the student council has had to get creative. Lauren strives to bring positive change as well as a positive attitude to this year as they face new challenges. Being the change in some of the significant school events has given Lauren a feeling of belonging and a look into important decisions.
And with her extracurriculars, she has chosen a structured and advanced curriculum. These advancements push her to move toward her goals and keep up with her work inside and outside of school.
“My classes are Wind Ensemble, Algebra 2, Spanish 3, AP [U.S. History], Honors English 10, and Chemistry 215,” Lauren said. “AP [U.S. History] and Honors English has definitely been the most challenging for me so far, but, sometimes, it’s good to challenge yourself.”
COVID-19 has already created a sense of instability and fear for this school year, and with her busy schedule with extracurriculars and a challenging curriculum, her year is far from easy.
Throughout all these new beginnings and mysteries entering her life, Lauren’s twin sister, Tara has been an important and meaningful gift in her life. Her sister brings her a sense of comfort, reflection, and support that she needs.
“Since before I was born I’ve had a built-in best friend. We have very different personalities, and yet we’re also extremely similar,” Lauren said. ” Imagine having someone you can turn to and have them know exactly what you want to talk about before you even open your mouth. We have that kind of relationship where we know what the other person is thinking at a single glance,” Lauren said.
“Overall, school this year has been chaotic,” Lauren said, “but if this year has taught me anything, it’s to be grateful for the people I get to share my life with. When school went online, I missed all of my friends immensely, so I’m happy to have the chance to see them again, even if it’s not all the time.”