Brooklyn Douglas – North Dakota Interview by Zoe D'Angelo Nomination by Victoria Douglas Photography by Gina Price Photography and Jalyn Helstad Issue 27 of Inspiring Teens Magazine
The Nomination: Brooklyn Douglas is an inspiration to so many. She is constantly putting others before herself, making her so selfless. Her faith, family, education, and sports are her entire life. She is ranked number 1 in her class; is taking honor courses, and collegiate classes all while maintaining a 4.5+ GPA. Her unstoppable work ethic is what she is known for! Brooklyn always carries such a positive attitude and can truly motivate anyone.
Tell us how faith and sports are a major part of your life. My faith and sports are what made me who I am today. Playing for God has been my ultimate goal in sports and has taught me so much throughout my life. I have been able to attend a Christian basketball camp where my faith built tremendously and building on from that I have been able to coach young kids and influence their lives. This summer I went on a missions trip with that organization where my life was changed forever and I truly realized how blessed I am.
What were some of your favorite sports to play as a child? As a child my favorite sports to play were basketball, volleyball, track, and softball. I loved doing anything I could to be active and still do. I played softball until I broke my leg in a game, but I still play basketball and volleyball at the Varsity level. I also aspire to play college basketball going into college next year.
Tell us about the trip you went on around the world! Before 2019 I had never been outside of the country. Now I have spent about a month of time outside of the United States and I loved it. I went to Mexico with my family and it was so much fun. Next, I went to Costa Rica with my Spanish class for two weeks, staying with a family there for one week. It was an amazing learning experience for me along with meeting some incredible people. After that I went to the Dominican Republic on a mission trip. This trip was a life changing week I will never forget.
In your opinion, what are some qualities you look for in a good leader? Why? Being student council president and captain of my volleyball and basketball team, some qualities I look for in a good leader is dependability, trustworthiness, and hard work. As a leader, anyone should be able to look up to you and count on you for anything they need. Trustworthiness is important because the people that look up to you should be able to trust you with what they want to tell you or need help with. Hard work is another important quality because a good leader will be willing to do what needs to be done in the best way possible and that’s giving others something to look up to.
How does it feel to be ranked number 1 in your class? I feel honored to be number 1 in my class because there are many other students in my school who are deserving of this honor. I believe I have worked very hard in my education and it pays off to earn this ranking. I also consider it a great accomplishment being involved in many other activities and jobs.
Anything else you’d like to tell us? One of my passions is to learn a foreign language. I currently work at Don Pedro’s, a Mexican restaurant, where I am the only non-Hispanic employee there. I am working on learning Spanish and I am so grateful for the desire my coworkers have shown me to help me improve on learning a second language.
Brooklyn will be featured in Issue 27 of Inspiring Teens Magazine!
Ava Dwyer - Maryland Interview by Claire Plath Nomination and Photography by Kate Mitchem Photography Issue 24 of Inspiring Teens Magazine
The Nomination: Ava Dwyer lit up my day when she showed up for her Dance Photo shoot a few weeks ago. The grace and beauty just flowed through the tips of her fingers to the tips of her pointed toes! Not only is she an incredible dancer who attends an International Baccalaureate high school in D.C., and dances every moment that she's not going to school or helping to teach at a local elementary school, but she still finds time to help rebuild schools in Africa!! She loves different cultures and meeting new people but her beauty is best seen through her dance!
What do you love most about dance? What I love most about dance is how free I feel. It allows me to release every bit of tension and focus on whatever story I am trying to portray. However, dancing is a constant battle to try to be better, forcing me to always push the limits and discover new and exciting ways to look at dance. I think that this urge to push myself to be better than I ever have been is what keeps me driven, and protects my love for dance.
What is the International Baccalaureate high school in D.C and how does it differ from other high schools? I attend Washington International School, and I am currently going into my junior year (11th grade). WIS is located in Washington, DC, and it is a multilingual private school that offers a full International Baccalaureate program. WIS is different from other high schools because of the large diversity in nationalities students represent, the incredible faculty with international backgrounds, and the challenging educational program it provides. The school opens doors to a large array of opportunities, including attending college anywhere in the world based on the International Baccalaureate diploma. WIS has a large but close-knit community that I am proud to say I am a part of.
Tell me a little bit about your experience volunteering at a school in Africa. Each year at Washington International School, there are various trips students can apply to be a part of. Trips to New Orleans, China, Guatemala, Peru, and Morocco are among them. Along with 16 other people, I was accepted to participate in a trip to a small town in Morocco called Azrou. The town is quite beautiful, sitting below two mountains. There are funding issues for public schools in Morocco, particularly for small towns like Azrou, so our aim was to improve some aspects of a local elementary school. We brought a total of nine computers, taught workshops on technology, language, and hygiene, and built a new library for the school, complete with donated books that were donated by fellow students. It was an amazing experience.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to be where you are today? Be ambitious. The only way to achieve your goals in life is to fight for them. For me, I always tell myself to not settle for anything less than the best I can do. If you want something bad enough, push yourself to get there and you will. Believe in what you are capable of, and more importantly, believe in yourself!
Ava will be published in issue 24 of Inspiring Teens Magazine!