Answer: I’m in Running Start, which I started my junior year. I didn’t want to stay at the high school. I wanted a more in-depth education. Now, I’m training to be in the Navy as a master at arms, which is like military police. I’m trying to get contracted in explosive ordinance disposal. It’s the bomb squad, right up there with Navy SEALs. As a woman, I can’t do that, so I want to do another special warfare job.
Q: What is the training like?
A: I’m training for the physical strength test, which includes push ups, pull ups, crunches, running and swimming. That’s been the biggest challenge. I take swim classes three days a week through Everett Community College. I just found out I’ve had a four minute take off, which is huge. I’m basking in it. It is a lot to do. This test is to get contracted, so this is just the warm-up.
Q: What other things are you doing to prepare for your service?
A: I’m RPOC (recruit chief petty officer) in the office here, which means I’m third in command. I lead other future sailors. I go monthly meetings and to base once a week for physical training. I’m focusing on my fitness. For the job I want, you have to give it all you’ve got. You’re living and breathing it. This is my future I’m working for.
Q: What other activities are you involved in?
A: I’m the student representative for the Sultan City Council, which means I sit on the council twice a month. This is my second year. I have a say in a lot of things, but I don’t have a vote. I do get to offer an opinion and update the council on all of the schools in the Sultan School District. It’s a lot of fun. I love working with the community.
Q: I understand you are receiving an award for your work in the community?
A: I’m being recognized by the Sky Valley Chamber of Commerce as youth volunteer of the year. They’re giving me an award for being their star kid volunteer, I guess you could say.
Q: What kinds of volunteering do you do?
A: I help with tons of community events. I often work in the kitchen. I’ve done the Sultan Harvest, the local Easter egg hunt and the Shindig. I’ve also done volunteering in the Visitor Center. Last year, I got a job at Paoli’s Sub Shop so that has cut down my volunteer time.
Q: What other activities are you involved in?
A: Freshman and sophomore year, I did International Club and Pep Club. Junior and senior year, I’ve been involved in National Honor Society. All four years, I participated in East Youth Council, which is a teen volunteer group.
Q: Are you into athletics?
A: I’m a four-year soccer letterman. That was my biggest high school accomplishment. Getting my fourth letter was the biggest deal to me. My team considered me the team mom. I was there for them and always brought extra stuff for everyone
Q: What’s been the best part of high school for you?
A: The teachers. Spending time with teachers that actually care, make it all worth your time.
Q: What’s been the biggest challenge for you?
A: The transition between high school and college. My first quarter, I didn’t do as well as I thought I’d do. But I picked myself up and got where I needed to be.
Q: Why did you choose the Navy?
A: The challenge. I didn’t like school much. I prefer being active. I do plan to finish my associate’s degree after boot camp. I’m only about half a year away.
Q: When do you leave?
A: I start boot camp in July, just after I graduate. I want to go now. I’ve had a huge life change. I’m a different person today than I was when I was a freshman. High school has changed me. College has changed me. The Navy is just finishing me.
Q: Who are your role models?
A: Debbie Copple and Elizabeth Emmons. I view them both as the queens of the Sky Valley. One of them is behind nearly every community event. They’ve become my second moms. And my dad, Colin Kenagy. It’s been just my dad and I forever. I’ve learned from others’ mistakes. I still make my own, but not to that extent. I’m trying to make a better life for myself. I want to support and stand by myself and everybody else. Every challenge I have faced in my life has made me a better person because of it.
Amy Nile: 425-339-3192; email@example.com.
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