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Class of 2024 Senior Spotlight: Anna Hill-Jones, Marquette High

Class of 2024 Senior Spotlight: Anna Hill-Jones, Marquette High

“A Brief History of Time” helped spark an enduring interest in physics for Marquette High senior Anna Hill-Jones.

She read the Stephen Hawking book about theoretical cosmology going into her freshman year at Marquette. Even though she didn’t understand all the terminology, she knew she wanted to learn more.

“I took Physics 1 at Marquette, and I fell in love with it,” Hill-Jones said. “So I decided I wanted to take the rest of the physics classes Marquette had to offer.”

She plans to study mechanical engineering or physics after graduation and is still finalizing her college choice, although the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a frontrunner.

Her time at Marquette has allowed Hill-Jones to explore all of her STEM-related curiosities. Engineering classes with Zach Avila and Kevin Sharitz have helped hone her creativity and technical skills, while calculus with Holly Lehmann and three years each of chemistry with Ed Bolton and physics with Adam Sansom have helped deepen her understanding of math and science.

As a captain of the Gluons robotics team, co-founder of the school’s Superposition chapter for empowering women in STEM and co-president of Science National Honor Society, Hill-Jones also made it a point to expand her educational experiences outside of the classroom.

This past summer, she also participated in a hands-on internship at the University of Missouri-St. Louis astrophysics department through Rockwood Partners in Education.

“Some of my favorite memories at school have been building things,” Hill-Jones said. “In robotics, we spend a lot of time refining our ideas and creating our robot. I think it’s really cool to see how a couple of ideas that you draw up on the board can come to life. That has always been really interesting to me. My teachers are always encouraging me to take projects to the next level.”

She also sought out – and benefited from – a myriad of other leadership opportunities at Marquette. Hill-Jones was a two-year captain of the school’s winter color guard team, which just culminated its 2024 season with a first-place finish. She served as National Honor Society secretary of media and led successful fundraisers for the Gluons in consecutive years.

One of Hill-Jones’ favorite memories is organizing a Pinewood Derby racecar-building event for elementary school students with Superposition. Only one student showed up for the first meeting but – by the time the second meeting rolled around – the program was a big success.

“The teachers and students really loved it,” she said. “It’s always been a good moment to see when it does work out and your hard work is amounting to something.”

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