Gracie Hines – West Virginia Nomination & Photography by Lutrisha Nicole Photography Issue 50 of Inspiring Teens Magazine
Nomination: Gracie Hines is an all-around student who is involved in multiple extracurricular activities and volunteering, and she does so while keeping a 4.3 weighted GPA. Gracie is on the Varsity and Competition Cheerleading squad. Gracie is also Vice President of her school’s FBLA, a member of the National Honor Society, and a Promise Scholar. Gracie’s beauty is apparent, but she also has a beautiful talent—Art; Gracie won 1st place for the 2021 Congressional Art Award. Gracie has used her artistic talents to volunteer her time to paint murals for local shops/schools. Gracie is the definition of an Inspiring Teen.
Photography by Lutrisha Nicole Photography
What would you most like to be interviewed about? I would most like to be interviewed about my passion for helping further research in the medical field.
What would you like to develop? I would love to develop new medications for diseases that are currently uncured, as well as help regulate drug prices for existing medication for those who cannot afford it. Pharmaceutical companies should not be allowed to increase prices by sometimes 200% just to pay themselves, when people all around our country are suffering.
How can this be accomplished? / What can be done? The first step in my opinion is focusing on these uncured diseases more. I feel as if though diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s aren’t focused on enough, and the lack of attention is the reason for no cure. As for the price increases, we need to publicize how much it really costs the companies to manufacture these medicines and show that they could be sold for a lot cheaper.
Tell us more about your cheer career. When did you get started, what have been some memorable wins, etc. What is a favorite memory from your competition cheer squad? I cheered when I was super little, took a break, then started again in 8th grade, and have cheered ever since. Some of the most memorable wins has been during basketball season. Last year, both of our boys and girls varsity teams made it to the state tournaments, and the buzzer beaters that got them there were insane. A favorite memory from competition would probably be during the practices, when we would smack heads or get kicked in the face during stunts, laugh, and keep going. Really shows our drive and spirit.
Why did you run for vice president of your school FBLA and what does your job now entail? What do you find most fulfilling in your role? I ran because I wanted a leadership position somewhere, and FBLA interested me the most. I now help run meetings, make meeting agendas, and help schedule community service events. I find helping my community most fulfilling, as we do a large variety of projects throughout the year.
What has been a favorite volunteer activity within your membership of NHS? Due to covid, we haven’t been able to do much within the community. We do have planned to donate items to the Veterans really soon, which I’m excited about.
What is Promise Scholar and what does it involve on your end? Promise Scholar is a scholarship that is given out in West Virginia. You must meet certain requirements such as having a high enough score on the SAT/ACT tests and having enough GPA. Being a promise scholar is highly respected, as many people in the state don’t qualify for it.
We would love to see and for you to tell us about your favorite piece of art! My favorite piece of art that I have done would probably be the hyper-realistic cherry piece that I did for the Congressional Art Competition. It took over 30 hours to complete, but every second was worth it.
What was your photoshoot like with Lutrisha Nicole Photography and what did you love most about your senior portrait experience? All the sessions that I have had with her have been so much fun. For this one, we went up on a scenic highway in a neighboring county, which is nationally famous for the views and colors during the fall. What I’ve loved most is probably her obsessing over how good a picture is after she takes it. It makes me laugh every time. Also, her husband is hilarious as well. He always makes sessions so fun.
What inspiring things about you does your nomination not cover? Besides everything mentioned, I also work a part time job in a kitchen in a local deli. 4 of my 8 classes are college level/dual enrollment classes, and I have maintained straight A's my entire life. Also, throughout high school, I have taken the most challenging courses offered, including AP. I am also a member of our school's science bowl team, and in FBLA, I placed 3rd at the state level in my category. Finally, I also interned for the West Virginia House of Delegates last winter.
How do you balance all your activities and still maintain such a high GPA? What advice would you give to others who might be struggling trying to fit it all in? Balancing all of this is honestly about time management. Staying on top of things and not procrastinating is what really helps me and keeps my stress levels relatively low. The advice I would give would be to not procrastinate, and if you get things done early, then you have more free time.
Tell us more about your internship with West Virginia House of Delegates. How did you get the internship, and what did you do there? What was your biggest take away? I was nominated by my history teacher at the time, and apparently, they liked my application. I got to sit in on house sessions and listen to new bills being discussed. I went and got snacks and coffee for the delegates and had the chance to ask questions after the session was adjourned. My biggest take away would probably be how surprisingly laid back the environment was. I was expecting the law-making process to be super strict.
Photography by Lutrisha Nicole Photography
What is the hardest thing you have ever accomplished, and how did you do it? Maintaining my schoolwork after the passing of my dad. Got through it through an insane amount of determination and, quite honestly, a lot of distraction.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to be where you are today? Work hard, and always believe in your abilities. You can do more than you think.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years/what are your plans? I’ll probably still be in college in 5 years, most likely in graduate school.
What is your favorite activity or pastime that was not in your nomination? I really enjoy baking and cooking in general. Do you have a hidden talent? What is it? My only real talent is art I think, and it isn’t really hidden at this point. 3 Things on your bucket list 1. Travel the world 2. Help the most people that I can. 3. Get a cat and a husband, in that order.
Who do you find inspiring? My sister, Kelsi.
What about you inspires others/why do you think you are inspiring? People always comment on my work ethic, and I would have to agree that’s why I’m inspiring. I work so hard at everything I do.
Is there anything else you would like to tell us? Thank you for the opportunity! Look for Gracie in Issue 50 of Inspiring Teens Magazine!