Volleyball Valedictorian: Katie Miller

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valedictoriankatiesmall[Editor’s Note: this is the first in The Foothill Dragon Press’ series of interviews with the Valedictorians and Salutatorian of the Class of 2010. Check back soon for more!]

When Principal Joe Bova came on the intercom and announced the four valedictorians and salutatorian for the class of 2010, students listened with surprise to hear their grade point averages – solid 5.0s. How did they do it? These five students became mythological beings, juggling school, sports, and community service in an almost inconceivable way. But in reality they are just teenagers, not too different from the rest of the class.

So, who are these students? What is it that sets them apart?

For Katherine Miller, better known as Katie, it’s her passion for the environment. Everything from her planned major in college, her desired career, and her hero project reflects this.

“The environment is something that’s important to me. It’s going to be around forever so we better take care of it for our children,” Miller explained.

Her hero project is giving global warming presentations to elementary schools, spreading awareness of our effect on the earth wherever she goes.

“It’s a lot of fun, I actually got two dates to the prom from fifth graders,” she said, laughing.

She’s done almost 300 hours of community service hours, and not all are about saving the world by stopping global warming. Most of it was done instead by saving lives – the lives of cats. She fostered stray cats for Greyfoot before they were adopted.

“My favorite though was helping in kindergarten and first grade classes,” she added.

When she was younger she even wanted to be a teacher. But she continued to describe that she wanted to be many things – everything from teacher, actress, to her mathematical dream of becoming an actuary. Now her plans have changed.

“I either want to be an environmental engineer, because I love the environment, or I want to go into law and do environmental law or politics and champion the environment.”

As always, her love for the environment is reflected in every part in her life. Planning on going to Yale or Dartmouth, she wants to study environmental engineering or sustainable design and go on into law or politics.

But not everything she does is about saving the world.

Another activity that interests her is volleyball.

“I used to play volleyball, like, nonstop. I was captain of the varsity team in summer and fall. I also played club volleyball.”

Now she keeps busy with tutoring, being the president of GWAT club at school, and starting her own line of purses.

“I like to sew. Right now I’m trying to sew my prom dress and then I’m also trying to start my own little line called Blue Berry, it’s purses. One of my goals is to donate part of the profit to a charity.”

By the way, the logo of Blue Berry? It’s a blue strawberry.

So what is Katie Miller’s secret for doing so well in so many areas?

“I can’t tell it, because then everyone else will do so well,” she laughed, “No, I don’t have a secret.”

She was more open to telling the Dragon Press what her greatest challenge was the last four years.

“Having the motivation to get everything done that I needed to.”

There has been speculation that the valedictorians aren’t human. When asked “robot, alien, superhero, or amazing genetic cocktail,” she answered with a laugh.

“Superhero, I’m Wonder Woman.”

Photo: Katie Miller balances volleyball, studying and saving the enviroment. Photo by Elizabeth Roemisch, The Foothill Dragon Press.

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