Jamie Copeland is a senior at Cedar Park Christian Schools’ Mountlake Terrace campus. She is a basketball player, ASB president, cheerleader and, of course, a Lion. (Dan Bates / The Herald)

Jamie Copeland is a senior at Cedar Park Christian Schools’ Mountlake Terrace campus. She is a basketball player, ASB president, cheerleader and, of course, a Lion. (Dan Bates / The Herald)

Cedar Park Christian senior stepping up to new challenges

Jamie Copeland’s academics include STEM studies, leadership, ASB activities, honor society.

MOUNTLAKE TERRACE — Jamie Copeland, who lives in Snohomish, is a senior at Cedar Park Christian Schools’ Mountlake Terrace campus. The ASB president still tries new things, such as cheerleading this year, and pulls a 4.0 in a demanding honors and STEM program.

Question: You are the president of the Associated Student Body. What are you working on?

Answer: At the moment we have homecoming. Our school doesn’t have a football team. So basketball is our big sport. So we do our homecoming court and our homecoming in January, so we’ve been planning for that.

Q: What drew you to leadership?

A: The people I saw in leadership were kind of who I was striving to be. Like when I was in eighth grade and I was looking up at the seniors, I thought those people are really setting a good example. I wanted to do that myself. So I stepped up and got involved. It was a great way to get involved in school, too, and that’s something I’ve really enjoyed in high school.

Q: Why is it important?

A: Especially at this school because it’s such a small school, by being involved I’ve been able to help others, myself included, to find more friends and just have greater relationships with people. And also as the leader now … to go out more to people who don’t have a place and include them.

Q: What else are you involved in?

A: I’m on our (National Honor Society); I’m the vice president of service this year. I’m in cheer right now. I’ve done volleyball, basketball, track and field. And I’m in our STEM program right now. Actually me and the other person in it are going to be the two first who will be graduating with the STEM diploma.

Q: What is the STEM diploma?

A: So it’s science, technology, engineering and math. It’s a separate diploma, so you have to do different requirements, electives and classes. So I’ve taken computer science. I’m in engineering design now. I’ve taken video game design, web design. It also requires you to take four years of math and science, which also goes along with our honors program that I’m in as well.

Q: Why was this something you wanted to pursue?

A: I think probably just the higher diploma. I like math but I’m not a huge science person. But our engineering design class I enjoy quite a bit more than I thought I would. … I think I just wanted to figure out something I’d be good at, because I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do for college.

Q: What are your plans?

A: At this point I’m waiting for acceptance letters. … I’ve considered possibly doing elementary education or physician’s assistant or physical therapy, but I haven’t narrowed down on one. I kind of just want to do something where I can help people. With elementary kids, I feel like that’s a really vital time of their life where you can pour into them, and I love kids.

Q: Do you have any teachers you look up to?

A: There are so many mentors that have poured into my life and they really care about us here. I think that one that has been like my best friend is our teacher Mrs. (Ann) Gillis. She was my eighth-grade through sophomore year math teacher and she’s also the ASB adviser. So she’s taught me a lot. She’s a really good teacher, but on a personal level she also knows me so well. I’ll sometimes go in her office and we’ll just talk for an hour. She’s one of the sweetest people I’ve met in my entire life.

Q: This is your first year doing cheer?

A: All other years I played basketball. We went to state last year. … I just decided I wanted to go out with that as my last memory of basketball. Our boys team is supposed to be really good this year. So I decided to stay in the basketball realm and join something new. We went in blind, and it’s been so much fun so far.

Q: You’re also involved in your church?

A: I love going there and just spending time there. It’s been so much fun. I’ve gotten such close relationships with the people there. I just came back from a mission trip in July to El Salvador. It was just awesome.

Q: What does it feel like to be at this stage?

A: There’s a lot of different emotions that you feel. I feel the stress of “oh my gosh, I don’t know what I’m going to do with my life.” … I’m in that stage where I’m like I don’t really want to leave high school yet, but I’m also a little bit ready to go and just experience something new.

Melissa Slager: mslager@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3432.

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