Each senior class is made up of students with diverse interests and talents. The School has left its mark on them and they on it. In the little time we have left together, we'd like to offer some portraits of our seniors, to show how they have benefited from their time at Randolph and are prepared for what's next.
What was it like coming to Randolph?
I arrived at Randolph in the 7th grade in the second semester. Mr. Kunin was my advisor, Virginia Saft was my welcome buddy, and Zoe Evans was from my mentor family. Fiona Campbell was my first true friend because she was the first person who invited me to sit with her for lunch.
When I came to Randolph, I was rather distraught because I had left behind a school and a group of friends that I loved. The school that I used to attend was Malmesbury School in England, and I made some amazing friends there who I still keep in contact with. The largest difference between Malmesbury and Randolph is diversity. Malmesbury had students from neighboring villages so white students tended to be the majority at the school and the school was very large. I was considered to be quite exotic because I am Chinese and had lived in the United States. I love the diversity of the student body at Randolph because there is a sizable portion of students who are non-white. I also feel I have personal connections to my teachers here.
How has Randolph taught you to be more independent?
Randolph has allowed me to embrace myself wholly. In English class, the juniors embark on the I-Search paper to research any topic of interest that they want. I chose international adoption. I researched the steps of adopting a child from another country. I interviewed a family friend who worked at an orphanage in China, and interviewed Mr. Treadwell and Mrs. Abrams about their adoption experiences, and I visited Lifeline Children's Service. Through my research, I gained the courage to look through the files concerning my own adoption. The files were open for me to look, but I refused to read them because I feared that looking into my adoption would betray the family who loved and raised me. However, the I-Search gave me the strength to finally look at my adoption files, and it was more than rewarding, it was cathartic. I will never know why my biological parents left me, but I know they cared enough about me to leave me in front of an apartment complex in a public space where I was sure to be found and taken to an orphanage.
Above: Katelyn with her mom and a friend, after leading Zumba at Fitness Fest.
What has the Honor Code meant to you?
The Honor Code embodies the trust that teachers have for us, serving as a reminder of their trust and that they hold us accountable for our actions.
What did you learn about yourself through the college process?
To keep an open mind and trust my instincts.
What was your greatest challenge at Randolph?
AP English Language and Composition, without a doubt, was the hardest class I have ever taken. I hold myself to a high standard in English, and I thought I knew everything. However, this class caused me to rethink this. The class was difficult, but it also further ignited my passion for English because I struggled, and it felt like a victory every time I got a good grade. My classmates were animated; we were in it together, helping each other through each seemingly impossible challenge. Ms. Rossuck is a fantastic teacher because she would present a new challenge for us everyday in the classroom. Her assignments ultimately made me better and confirmed my desire to pursue English in my studies. Through all of my struggles, I gained confidence in my writing abilities.
Plans for the future?
I want to teach English and history because those subjects reveal pieces of the truth of human nature
and foster critical thinking skills. English teachers Mrs. Abrams and Ms. Rossuck have been great influences on my life. They inspired my love for English, and someday I want to inspire that same kind of passion in one of my students.
What activities have you been involved in?
I played soccer in middle school, then took up theater. The program allowed me to make friends and learn new skills. From participating in Theatre Randolph, I want to be involved in Montevallo's theater program.
Where can you be found when not in class?
If I have a free period, I am in the library. The library is the perfect place for studying; I like talking to the librarian, Ms. Khun. This year she started a Library Leaders Group, which I was in. This group selected books for the Upper School summer reading list.
I always love Raider Grill so when I don't bring lunch, I usually buy from the grill. Also I appreciate it when they have special desert days, like Bananas Foster or beignets.
What should people know about Randolph?
Randolph gives children the best education. The class sizes are small so your child can form a relationship with his or her teacher. Randolph is a place of acceptance. The school celebrates and includes other cultures. Holi is an example of this when the School invites students to participate in an Indian cultural activity.
Favorite school tradition?
I love the all-school musical productions at Randolph because it brings younger students into theater.
What I am going to remember about Randolph is Interim. Ever since freshman year, I have attended the Artist's Retreat in Eureka Springs. I stuck with the trip for three straight years because I found support from Ms. Rossuck, Mr. Gee, and my fellow artists. For the first two years, I was working on my fantasy novel, but this most recent trip gave me the courage to try something new. I choreographed two Zumba routines to two songs, and I had so much fun.
How would you like to be remembered?
As a good student, a friendly person, and a writer.