June 4, 2009 in Washington Voices

Driven by an inquiring mind

Kristopher Schubach challenges himself
Juan Juan Moses dmoses55@msn.com
Courtesy High photo

(Full-size photo)

Kristopher Schubach has always been curious.

When he was a young boy, that curiosity resulted in many dismantled toaster ovens, scattered parts of old phones and just about anything he was allowed to take apart in the house without having to put it back together again.

That curiosity – the nagging question of “what’s that like?” – has driven the Lakeside High School senior to try every subject available in his entire high school career.

“A lot of time I just want to challenge myself if I can do it,” the soft-spoken 17-year-old explained. “Sometimes it does not work out. But at least I find out what it is about.”

And sometimes, it does work out. Schubach played keeper on the school soccer team for four years. “It took me three years to learn how to catch a ball in a dive! But I stuck with it. And it works out in the end.”

It is this tenacity and perseverance, a trademark for future success, which separates him from the pack. He carries a 4.0 grade-point average and is one of three valedictorians.

Lakeside college career counselor Jill Kassa notes that Schubach demonstrates a great deal of maturity, motivation, and dedication. “He has a real vision of where he wants to go, and he has a plan of how to get there. He does not deviate from that.” Kassa said.

Not only is he driven, but he is well-mannered, personable, caring and compassionate. As a sophomore, he was one of the 10 flutists in the band. But the band needed a bassist. He did not really like bass but offered to switch instruments to help out. “It just seemed logical that it should be me because I play guitar,” he said. “It turns out now I am a better bassist than a flutist!”

He is quick to give others credit for his success: His family for being there for him whenever in need; his friends for signing up for the same classes with him to keep him going; his teachers for going the extra mile to ensure his learning.

“He is just a very well-rounded young man.” Kassa said. “We will all miss having him.”

His mother, Kristen Schubach, said it wasn’t uncommon for her son to come home from soccer practice and make dinner for the family. It turns out he has been cooking since he was a young boy.

“When he was not taking things apart, he was concocting things to eat. Strange things like peanut butter jelly mayonnaise and mustard sandwich,” Kristen Schubach said.

Her son hopes to have a career in diagnostic medicine. A sophomore biology class with an assignment on disease research has left him with an indelible impression. He plans to enroll in the Eastern Washington University pre-med program in the fall.

“That would be a good way to take what I know and help people,” he said.

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