Eighteen-year-old Shakila remembers the exact moment that she realized she could control her own destiny. It was the day that she met a woman that owned a dress shop in her small Ugandan village. Independence was a rarity for women in Shakila’s village, but here was a woman that was single, self-supporting, and lived life by her own rules. Shakila was enthralled by the prospect.
If musical theater were a sport, the 5th Avenue Theatre Awards competition would be the state tournament for high school drama kids. Or, better yet, let's call the 5th Avenue awards the state high school Tony awards.
Snohomish County schools tend to do well, and this year was no exception. And even better than usual for Arlington High School.
Eric Heisey learned to read by looking at bird field guides. So, not only could he read well by age 6, he could readily identify many birds.
“I vividly remember being in Trout Lake when I was this age, and being able to identify birds like Red Crossbill and Evening Grosbeak,” Heisey said in an email.
The recent Sunnyside High School graduate can’t say for sure when he first became interested in birds, but that makes perfect sense. It’s as if birding has been part of his life from the very beginning — before it began, even.
During a student club discussion earlier this school year, senior Edward Lee decided he needed to speak up.
Delta High School’s Ambassadors Club was debating which organizations to help with a fundraiser. One student suggested My Friend’s Place, a shelter for homeless teens in Kennewick.
That’s when Edward, 18, told his fellow students that he had lived for a time at the shelter and it needed support, such as more beds to accommodate youth. The shelter’s washer and dryer at the time were on their last legs as well.
“A lot of them couldn’t believe (I’d been homeless),” Edward said.
She doesn't define herself by the standards others set.
Kortney Danson, who graduated from Mariner High School last week, was born with a condition that causes hundreds of tiny tumors and cysts to swell inside her left cheek and upper lip, paralyzing her facial expressions.
She has undergone more agonizing surgeries to remove the growths than she can count. She was 11 months old when she had her first. Her most recent was shortly before mid-winter break of her senior year. Her future includes surgeries every two years.
A lot of people talk about "celebrating diversity," but at Tukwila's Foster High School, students live it every day. Students are greeted with a sign welcoming them in scores of different languages. Flags of more than a dozen different nations ring the cafeteria.
In fact, students from 50 different countries speak 45 different languages at Foster.