student Kayla Carpenter's senior year was about finding her voice.
The normally reserved Carpenter grew into roles as a senior leader on the Lancers basketball team and editor-in-chief of the Lancer Feed student publication. She credits journalism adviser Nancy Smith and basketball coach Denise Meyer with helping her flourish.
"They always had confidence in me," Carpenter said. "They saw I could be a leader, and I could use my voice and be heard, especially this year. They made this year so special for me."
Carpenter said she enjoyed a string of influential teachers during her time in Rockwood, from the Clarkson Valley Early Childhood
Center, Babler Elementary
, Rockwood Valley Middle
In addition to being an academic all-state selection in basketball and award-winning writer and editor, Carpenter was on the executive board of National Honor Society and a member of Alpha Theta and the Key Club at Lafayette.
She is continuing her basketball career at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, where she plans to start on a premed track.
"My dad is an emergency room physician. Watching him and his dedication, I've been really interested in it," Carpenter said. "It feels right and where I should be: helping people and growing my interest in science."
She chose Hope in large part because it reminded her so much of Lafayette.
"The professors at Hope seem to really care about students, not just how they perform in their classes but outside of school," Carpenter said. "That's exactly how it is at Lafayette. The community around Hope is so tight-knit and supportive. That's exactly how it is at Lafayette."