Katherine L., Senior — Interview conducted by Joseph Shelby
Wednesday, March 22, 2023: Sonam and Ava have just wished TQ a happy birthday for the 28th week in a row, and Assembly has ended. I managed to pick out my interviewee from the crowd of student heads walking towards the gym. It was almost as if she forgot about the interview (impossible). “Welcome, Kate.” The interview has begun…
Joseph: Okay, question one. If you could choose one song to play every time you walk into a room for the rest of your life, which song would you choose?
Kate: Okay, a lot of people would probably guess that I would say this, but it would have to be “Chelsea Morning” by Joni Mitchell or “Heat Above” by Greta Van Fleet. “Heat Above” is just the most dramatic song in the entire world, so it would just be funny to walk into a room with the drama of that, but “Chelsea Morning” is such a lovely song. It’s very happy, so yeah.
Joseph: Is there any emotional connection for you?
Kate: I love Joni Mitchell. I think she’s a brilliant artist. I don’t know. The way that she speaks about colors and being happy is just something that you don’t see a lot. I just like the idea of making art about being happy.
Joseph: So you think that every time you walk into a room, you want it to be happy, even if it’s a little forced?
Kate: Yeah, pretty much.
Joseph: Okay that’s a good answer. What’s something unique about you that your classmates might not know?
Kate: Sure. I think that I‘m a pretty open book and I’m a pretty extroverted person, and so lots of people know lots of things about me. I really like Star Wars. I think I’m a pretty analytical person, and so I tend to get really into things, so I know all the nitty gritty stuff about Star Wars. I don’t particularly consider myself a nerd in that respect, but I think that’s probably something that says, "Oh, she has all this random knowledge about something that’s not super relevant to everyday life."
Joseph: Okay, what’s the most random Star Wars fact you know?
Kate: Ahsoka Tano has two double-bladed white lightsabers—this is my favorite Star Wars fact—that she took off of a Sith that she killed, and then she converted them. So the reason that she’s able to kill Sith is because at the end of the Clone Wars, she states, very dramatically, "I am not a Jedi." I don’t know, I just think it’s kind of powerful because she’s rejecting this idea of an oppressive system by saying "I’m able to do things because I choose to do them, not because some system tells me to."
Joseph: Okay, that was awesome. Question number three: looking back at your experience at CPS, what is something you'll never forget?
Kate: There’s actually a photograph of the thing that I’m thinking of. The first thing that came to my mind is there was a moment in CHOREO where I and my co-director Vivian went off stage at the end of the show and grabbed two microphones and said, "Thank you for coming to our show." There’s just the cutest picture ever of both of us just beaming and waving at the audience before the curtain closed, and that was a moment I loved so much. I love CHOREO. I never thought that I was going to get to choreograph dances like that for groups of people, and I just thought it was awesome. I got to direct the whole thing and manage it how I wanted to make it a super inclusive space for everyone which other CHOREO directors didn't traditionally do. So yeah, just that moment of the picture and us staring out at the audience and being super happy was great.
Joseph: That’s the type of memory to really stick with you. What are you looking forward to in the future? This could be whatever happens in the rest of the semester, summer, college, or if you’re doing something other than college. Pretty much anything.
Kate: Yeah, I’m looking forward to finding more communities like this. I think what’s unique about College Prep—and I say this a lot in my admission stuff—but what’s unique is the way that everybody has something they’re very interested in. It’s not like everybody’s interested in the same thing, but people have wide ranges of knowledge, and so I think that it’s very cool. I'm looking forward to finding more spaces like that. I’m also hoping to go into politics and be around a group of people that know all these crazy niche things about politics like I do. I think it’s going to be really fun.
Joseph: Yeah, I agree. It’s very weird to see a community like ours at a high school level. You said you wanted to go into politics. Is there anything that inspired you to do that?
Kate: Yeah. Watching The West Wing with my dad when I was eight years old was definitely quite inspiring. For those who don’t know, it’s a political drama TV show that was on in the early 2000s. I just like the idea of compromising and working through solutions and being someone that’s in the room able to enact change. I think it’s very easy to be a passive person when it comes to politics and laws that are made and to just be someone who doesn't like that something happened but thinks that there’s nothing they can do about it. I don’t think that’s a productive way to live, and so I think that I should go jump into it and enact change for myself if I want to see change.
Joseph: Yeah, just being in the room where it happens. That was a great answer. If you could say thank you to one room at CPS, which one would it be?
Kate: Ooh. I would say the freshman history room—the one that’s all the way up at the top of the hill. I’ve had a good little full-circle moment there, where I started the first class of my first year there when I had Asian Worlds and was doing that whole thing. I actually have a class in there this semester which is wild. I don’t know. I really like history, and it’s one of my favorite subjects, so just being able to be in a room with teachers throughout all four years that just love what I love and want to have conversations with me about things that I love is really special. Also, the nice new bathrooms. Those are quite lovely as well on a more silly note, but that’s on the side. Thank you freshman history room and maybe the Hill building bathrooms as well.
Joseph: Okay, yeah, I see that. That’s all the questions. Awesome job!
Kate: Great, thank you so much!