Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Student Spotlight: Melissa Young

Josephinum High School Freshman Melissa Young has been with her mentor, Elena for 2 years now and things just keep getting better and better. In fact, the two of them spend quite a bit of time together outside of tutoring, often hanging out at Elena’s house or going out with friends and fellow Cabrini Connections students Jon’nita Blake and Ashanti Roby. One of their favorite things to do is just chill and watch scary movies such as the recent horror flick, Jeepers Creepers 2. Other times they’ll go out to eat or to the movies, or occasionally even go skating, which they both really enjoy.

Like many students, it took Melissa a bit of searching to find the right high school for her. However, in the end she decided on Josephinum Academy and is quite happy she did. Even though they’re fairly strict (i.e. they require uniforms, have harsh attendance and detention policies…etc.) she’s glad to be at a small, Catholic, all girls academy. Her favorite subjects there are Literature and Spanish and her most challenging course is Religion. Although she comes from a Christian upbringing, she finds religion class difficult because it requires stepping back from her own belief system and opening herself up to the huge range of religions that exist in the world. However, she has brought her grade up from an F to a C and is working with her mentor to improve her grade even more.

When not at Cabrini Connections or Josephinum, you can usually find Melissa playing basketball with the boys, which she’s done since 7th grade. She also enjoys swimming, although she doesn’t get the opportunity to do it as often now that the New City YMCA on Halsted closed down. She also enjoys writing poetry and drawing to express her feelings and emotions. She started doing this after seeing the way her friend Destiny would draw when she got angry in order to get her feelings out and calm down. Melissa has found both drawing and poetry to be great ways of dealing with her frustrations and actually plans on putting her poetry into music, since she’s an avid singer. Next year she plans on joining the choir at school and working on her voice to accomplish this goal. Since she is also a member of the Cabrini Connections tech club, perhaps she’ll find a way to use technology to combine her multiple interests into one multimedia project involving her voice, her poetry and her drawings. Either way, don’t stop dreaming Melissa, you’re destined for great things!

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