Our Senior Spotlight series continues with a profile on Caroline Surges, a senior at Naperville North, from the Class of 2014. Like Daniel Phillipp and Nolan O'Rear who were recently featured, Caroline continues to make us proud by her achievements and accomplishments since her graduation from Saints Peter and Paul School.
||(L-R) Caroline with Shanley Hrubesky her teammate of 4 years
4 year starter on volleyball and captain of the Freshman A team, the JV team as a sophomore and the Varsity team as a Senior. We won conference my freshman and JV years and we won Regional's my sophomore and senior year!
Extra Curricular Activities:
LINK Crew leader (junior and senior year), First Class leader (junior and senior year), Adaptive PE leader (junior and senior year), Dawg Pound Spirit leader (senior year), Healthy Huskies rep (senior year), Top DAWGS leader (freshman and sophomore year), Council for Exceptional Children (freshman and sophomore year),YOUNG LIFE member (freshman-junior year), YOUNG LIFE leader (senior year), Class Advisory Board member (freshman-senior year), Sports Performance Volleyball Club (6th grade-senior year).
Honor Roll throughout high school, All Conference, All-Academic Volleyball Team (junior and senior years), FIGHT award recipient (JV season), JKB Leadership Foundation member (sophomore-senior years) - selected from over 400 possible members.
Safety Town Volunteer past 6 summers (60 hours), Student Volunteer at Edward Hospital (50+ hours to date), Student Shadow at Edward Hospital.
College Plans and Major:
I am going to attend Belmont University in Nashville, TN as I am a direct admit to their College of Nursing. I had offers to play volleyball at West Florida, LeMoyne College and St. Mary's College in South Bend but studying nursing is my top priority!
How my Catholic faith resonates with me as a teenager:
My faith has been a very important part of the last four years of my life although it was very challenging in the beginning of high school to continue growing in my faith the same way I did at SSPP. Religion was no longer something everyone studied or discussed by students. It went from being shared so frequently and naturally at SSPP to being so personal very fast. With that said, during my sophomore year I was able to take a comparative religions class that taught, not preached, different global religions. This was what made the difference in my high school experience and how my faith was reborn. The class was very opinionated and let me wander through my own thoughts of other religions versus mine. I so rigorously stood up for Christianity that I found myself seeking many opportunities to keep growing in my faith.
This was when I started to attend a bible study on Monday nights with a group called Young Life and this changed my life. I was accepted for who I am and was encouraged to share what I thought about every scripture passage we read. Many of my friends know I am a practicing Catholic and are aware of my Peter and Paul roots, something I never kept a secret just that it was not very well known.
I still proudly walk into school on Ash Wednesday with my ashes and am accepted with smiles and love and support from my friends. I remember sophomore year when I first came to school with my ashes, I heard someone say "I almost forgot to get my ashes today. I'm going to text my mom to remind her to take me after school." I really think that was God telling me I was doing the right thing.
My faith continues to push me to grow in new aspects of my life. I am not afraid to share my opinions and to preach the Word of God. My faith has made me who I am and I am so grateful that SSPP helped reinforce the values my parents gave me. I am a confident Catholic and know that when I look back in 10 years at my high school experience and teenage years, being so active in my faith will be something I will cherish.
What I learned at SSPP that helped me in High School:
ENGLISH! Ms. Zavodny (now Paski) was a rockstar and I was so much farther ahead of the other students in my classes.
A teacher at SSPP who had the most influence on me:
It has to be Mrs. Skroch. Although I really didn't care much for History, she pushed me so hard every day because she knew I was capable of doing more than I showed. As a result, History came very easy to me at NNHS.
Best SSPP experience which I will always cherish:
Our 8th grade class trip to DC! We were the first class to be allowed by the diocese to visit our nation's capital after the 9-11 attack in 2001 when they forbade schools from overnight trips. It was just amazing to be 13-14 years old and experience all of the things we learned about our country's rich history and to do so with your closest friends!
Advice for current students:
CHALLENGE yourself as a Freshman. Your workload at SSPP really did prepare you well and you can, and should, take honors and AP classes as early as possible if you qualify.