Holly McCormick

Cayli Yanagida, Copy Editor

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“Let me think,” Holly McCormick says, sitting across from me at a small table next to a window, the bustle of Starbucks’s business surrounding us. “I’d say impulsive, creative, and-” she pauses for a second to think. “Energetic.”

I nod. I agree. I have known Holly before this, having gone to the same middle school as her before I entered through Capital’s doors. Over the past two years, I have gotten to know Holly through Speech and Debate, and when she had been chosen as one of the Intriguing Seniors of Capital, I was more than excited to interview the talented artist, athlete, and debater.

“Let me start off with energetic,” Holly begins. “I find that when something is interesting to me, or when there is something I’m passionate about, I find that I’m really energetic about it. I like to be at a high tempo and move fast.” Even in the way Holly talks, I can feel her confidence and energy and excitement. This part of her personality is specifically seen when it comes to topics she cares about, such as her dedication to studying law.

“I want to be a lawyer, so I am very passionate about talking about the legal system.” Holly goes into further detail on the topics she’s interested in, such as politics and nonviolent drug crimes. “I’m really invested in movements and activism that relates to how the legal system works. So, like advocating for removing the box where you have to check if you’re a felon or not, or getting rid of for-profit prisons. I’m also very passionate about drug crimes and how we shouldn’t punish people for nonviolent drug offenses in our legal system.”

One of the baristas calls her name, and Holly leaves to retrieve her drink. When she returns, she continues without missing a beat. “I chose creative because I feel like a lot of the time, creativity is an underappreciated value for people. People really appreciate intellect and knowledgeability, but they don’t really think about how creative thinking improves the world, and how most of the ideas they talk about come from creative thinking. I think that creativity is not just something I apply to my arts when I paint or sing, but also my academics too.” She stops to take a sip of her drink, glancing around the busy store and waving at other Capital students.   

 Creativity is definitely seen through Holly’s hobbies. Not only does she excel in Public Forum Debate, but she’s also a skilled painter, singer, and athlete. “I started taking voice lessons when I was in seventh grade, and that was mainly for classical music and musical theater. So, I’m in choir now, and that’s mainly where I do my singing. I also paint Bob Ross paintings.” She lets out a little laugh. “I like to watch Bob Ross, and I will paint along with him as he goes. Other than that, I played soccer.” Holly spoke about her athletic achievements, and how she was able to get back into soccer after five years of refraining from the sport. “I’m a goalkeeper, and I was on varsity, which was super cool because I didn’t expect that at all. I hadn’t played in five years, and I was still able to make varsity as a starting goalkeeper, which was pretty dope.”

As the last of her three words, Holly explains her impulsive nature. “I chose impulsivity because I am very impulsive, whether it is in my social and personal life or just in school. When I hear an idea I like, I always think, “Yes, I am going to do that right now.” I just decide to do it right away without even thinking twice.” She shrugs, a smile on her face. “Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t.”

Holly’s impulsivity seems to work, having given her the ability to be an entertaining and fiery debater. Holly spoke of how debate made it possible for her to do what she loves to do-which is arguing-and preparing herself for her future career in law. Her radiant nature seemed to grow brighter when I asked her where she would be attending in the fall.

“I’m going to Western!” She declared, a huge smile on her face. “I am super excited. I am pursuing a double major in French and Law.” Holly explained that she had only applied to one college, but she had done it on purpose. Knowing where she wanted to go, she focused her attention on the one school she knew she wanted to go to. “I went to Western, and I also visited other colleges in the state. I knew I was going to go somewhere in state just because of how much lower the cost is. I’m definitely going to graduate school afterward, so I figured I’d go somewhere in state and comfortable for undergrad, and then would worry about going out of state to somewhere more foreign afterward.”

As for people that helped guide Holly down this path, her uncle appeared to be the one who inspired her to pursue her future career. “He speaks a bunch of different languages, and he travels a lot for his job,” she explains,“so through him, I kind of figured out that I want to travel for my job, and maybe live abroad.” Madame Kinsel has also made this possible for Holly, with Holly having nothing but love for Capital’s French teacher. “I didn’t intend to take four years from the start, but now I’m in 4 IB and it’s my favorite class of the day.” Having picked French as one of her two majors, it is clear that Holly is motivated purely off of the love for the language. She claims her continuation of French into college is purely because of how much Madame Kinsel has inspired her throughout the years.

Throughout our conversation, Holly showed her passion for what she loves, preparing herself for what is ahead by using her remarkable talents and skills to accomplish big things in her life. As her advice to all of the current Capital students, she says, “Don’t let other people get you down. By the time you’re a senior, it doesn’t matter who’s prom queen; be happy for whoever it is. Support other people because they will support you back. Your class grows together, and if your class is really friendly with each other and likes each other, your high school experience will be a billion times better.”

Cayli Yanagida, Managing Editor and Page Editor of Wide Load

Cayli Yanagida writes for the Capital Outlook newspaper. She is a managing editor, scheduled to graduate in 2020. Last year, Cayli specialized in InDesign...

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Holly McCormick