Maria Mendoza, 17, Bothell High School senior

School leader: Has been involved in student body leadership since middle school and this year is Bothell High School’s ASB president. “I just choose to be really active and dedicated. This past year at Bothell, I’ve really found my passion for leadership.”

Ms. Smile: Enjoys making others smile and have a good day. “I try to say ‘Hi’ to people, smile and wave.” For two months earlier in the year, she greeted students as they arrived on campus, handing out cookies. “If I can make somebody have a good day, then my day is good as well.”

Finding time for herself: Lately has been learning that taking care of herself is important, too. “It’s all about balance.”

Early riser: Comes to school at 6:45 each morning, in part to beat traffic.

Other activities: Has played volleyball and served on the school’s Reducing All Prejudice, or RAP, committee. Also is a board member for the Washington Association of Student Councils.

Academics: Takes senior English, ASB, senior American issues and pre-calculus. Also takes a two-period Teaching Academy, when she heads to Crystal Springs Elementary School to help teach fifth-graders.

Future teacher: Wants to be a teacher, preferably at the high school level, having admired her teachers the past three years. “I feel I’ve learned a lot here at Bothell, so I want to lean that direction.”

Just right: Enjoys the fifth-graders at Crystal Springs, which she says is just the right age – old enough to get her jokes but not so old that they’re “too cool.”

In training: As a teacher’s aide at the elementary, she checks papers, escorts kids to computer lab, reads with them and teaches some math and business lessons. “It’s been tons of fun.”

Career switch: Initially thought she might want to be a lawyer. “I talk a lot and like to argue.” But leadership classes changed her mind. “Just with helping people, being a teacher is one of the most powerful ways I can do so.”

Hidden hobby: Enjoys baking treats for her classmates. “It’s kind of nerdy but I like it. Sometimes I’ll watch the Food Channel more than anything else.”

Heroes: Has two older brothers who passed on words of wisdom and kept an eye on her growing up. “I look up to them a lot. … Family is a big part in my life.”

College plans: Heading to Western Washington University for its teacher education program.

Ready to move on: “I think I’ve had senioritis probably since my sophomore year.”

Know a super kid? Contact us as 425-339-3036 or e-mail

More in Local News

Live in Edmonds? Hate speeders?

Edmonds has $35,000 to address local residents’ concerns about speeding in their… Continue reading

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s top images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Students, staff at Arlington elementary school in lockdown

Arlington Police said all students and staff were safe but did not say why the lockdown happened.

Sirens! Flashing lights! — Move over!

We are a confident bunch on what to do when we hear… Continue reading

Marysville quits fire-department merger talks

Mayor Jon Nehring notified Arlington of the decision in a letter dated Jan. 10.

Everett marchers: ‘There’s too much to protest’ for one sign

About 150 people joined the “March to Impeach” from the waterfront to a county courthouse rally.

Legislation to limit opioid prescriptions under debate

Inslee also has requested a bill that prioritizes medication-assisted treatment for addiction.

Everett man accused of causing his baby’s brain damage

He told police he shook his son to get him to stop crying, and the boy slipped out of his hands.

Lake Stevens man shot by police reportedly was suicidal

The fatal shooting is the latest incident where someone apparently wanted police to fire.

Most Read