Student Spotlight: Gracie Howley

Name, age, grade:
Gracie Howley, 17, senior

What inspires you?
I am inspired by people who pursue their passions.

What is your favorite subject in school, and why?
Calculus is so interesting and when you know what you’re doing, it can be fun. I have struggled with basic computation all my life and it makes all of my math classes much more difficult. When I succeed at a problem or understand a concept it is one of the most satisfying feelings.

If you had the power to change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Sexual harassment wouldn’t exist. All women and girls would feel safe to walk down the street by themselves in whatever clothes they like.

If you could go anywhere, where would you go?
I want to take a big trip with my family to Norway, Sweden and Ireland, as this is where the majority of our ancestors are from.

Name one big challenge in your life right now:
I have been coasting through school for a while now. I have begun applying for colleges and I am realizing that what I’m doing won’t get me into the top schools I want. Wherever I go, this system won’t work for me. I am developing a good work ethic to transcend all spheres of my life – volleyball, work and school.

What is your dream job?
I would like to be a volleyball coach!

What are your three favorite things?
My three favorite things are volleyball, my best friends and hot and savory food!

Favorite book:
The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien

What do you want to do after high school?
I’d like to attend a four-year college to major in kinesiology and minor in business management or psychology (or both). I want to begin head coaching a middle school girls volleyball team and then work my way up to becoming a competitive club coach and maybe even owning my own club.

Something that makes you smile:
The endless possibilities that life has to offer make me smile, and knowing that I am awesome and strong and can get through anything if I push hard enough. Having the connections I share with my best friends also makes me smile!

A favorite Mount Madonna School memory – and why?
In my seventh grade performance of Alice in Wonderland I was the March Hare, buddy of the Mad Hatter played by [classmate] Carl Ward. There was a scene in which Carl and I were “surgically” operating on the White Rabbit’s clock. We would call out the tools we needed like forceps, clamps, all the basic necessary medical equipment. When we got to the scalpel, the prop was late. There was a very pregnant pause as the stage froze. I heard myself yell, “Hurry we have a dying patient!” The stage burst into frantic life and the missing prop finally got in. I was (and still am) so proud of myself for “saving the show.” That was probably the inciting incident to loving the spotlight and acting on stage. It was also a confidence boost because I did something so cool. When you are going through middle school, confidence boosts are important and somewhat hard to come by. I am thankful to Mount Madonna School for providing me with this experience.

Top three most played songs on your iTunes or iPod: 

Powerball by Topaz Jones

Sorry Not Sorry by Demi Lovato

Bad Decisions by Ariana Grande