Many teens look forward to taking easy classes during their senior year, but not Mead High School student Jennifer Choi. Her counselor, Keith Browning, said, “I’ve never seen a student take on so much.”
When Choi discovered Mead didn’t offer an Advanced Placement economics class, she asked if she could self-study. “You can imagine how hard it is to study AP economics without a teacher,” Browning said. “Jen’s unlike the typical high school student.”
Choi shrugged off the difficulty, saying, “It’s not that I’m really interested in economics, it’s more that I like a challenge.”
Indeed she does, because that wasn’t all she tackled. The ambitious student chose to take four additional AP classes and managed to maintain a stellar grade-point average. “She just seems to absorb things and does it with grace and ease,” Browning said.
Choi laughed when she talked about what she’d learned from the economics class. “Sale prices aren’t really ‘sale’ prices,” she said. “I feel like I’ve wasted a lot of money in my life!”
Despite her arduous school load, Choi’s nose isn’t always in her books. She’s active in the Korean Presbyterian Church youth group and played violin in both the Spokane Youth Orchestra and her school orchestra.
Additionally, for the past two summers she volunteered at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center. This proved to be a valuable experience as she plans to pursue a career in medicine and hopes to specialize in either cardiology or radiology. She’s already been accepted in the University of Washington’s Honors Program.
And this year Choi stepped out of her comfort zone to represent her school in the Lilac Festival pageant. “I’ve never done anything like that before – it’s not really my personality,” she said. The experience provided a different type of challenge. “I learned how to be very proper in public,” she said, laughing.
However, she doesn’t see more pageants in her future. “I’m more comfortable with studying than public speaking.”
As she reflected on her high school experience, Choi said, “I’ve learned that if I keep working hard, I’ll get great rewards. Staying motivated is worth it.”