Jenkins named CHHS “Senior of the Month”
COLONIAL HEIGHTS - Taylor Jenkins, a senior at Colonial Heights High School (CHHS), was recently awarded one of the school’s most prestigious titles, “Senior of the Month” for the month of March.
A tradition at the high school since 1998, students named “Senior of the Month” are considered the best representatives of their class. Nominations are collected from the CHHS staff each month as the committee looks for outstanding scholars, exceptional leadership skills, a wide array of activities, and sound character and judgment.
“When I first found out I was awarded Senior of the Month, I was ecstatic,” Jenkins said. “I am so grateful and blessed to be awarded this wonderful honor alongside the other nine recipients, whom I call friends.
“This recognition is motivating and humbling- a reminder that all of my hard work, dedication, and commitment has been recognized,” she added. “I understand there are many other well-deserved seniors in the Class of 2019, and to be awarded such a prestigious title means so much.”
An alumna of Lakeview Elementary School and Colonial Heights Middle School, Jenkins has enjoyed how the small size of Colonial Heights Public Schools (CHPS) has allowed for a closer connection between the teachers and students.
“The tight-knit community setting of CHHS has allowed me to form special bonds with so many teachers and counselors that I feel I could go to them anytime for anything,” she said. “They have been so supportive and have truly prepared me for college.
“I have enjoyed waving and speaking to people in the hallways and having special connections with the staff at CHHS, which is something I will really miss when I graduate,” she added.
In addition to challenging herself with rigorous Advanced Placement (AP) and honors courses - including AP United States History, Honors English 11, and AP Calculus - Jenkins has taken full advantage of the extracurricular opportunities offered at CHHS. She played varsity tennis as a freshman, and she’s involved herself in a variety of organizations including National Honor Society, Science National Honor Society, National English Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, Mu Alpha Theta, CHHS Ambassadors, Key Club, Students Organized for Developing Attitudes (SODA), Crime Solvers, Interact club, Leo Club, and AgriProject.
Additionally, Jenkins is a SCA representative, and she serves as Secretary for three separate organizations, including the Class of 2019, the Science National Honor Society, and the JOI club. She is also president of the BETA Club.
And she doesn’t take a break outside of school. Jenkins has has been employed at the Colonial Heights Public Library for the past three years. She also spent the last four summers volunteering at Southside Regional Medical Center as a Jr. Volunteer, and she volunteers at the Dunlop House on a monthly basis. Both of Jenkins’ volunteer experiences led her to discover a passion for working with both the youth and elderly populations - a passion she intends to explore in college.
While she hasn’t quite decided if she will attend Christopher Newport University or James Madison University in the fall, Jenkins is sure she wants to pursue a career in the medical field.
“Following graduation, my educational aspirations include acquiring a bachelor’s degree in Health Science with a minor in Pre-Physician Assistant,” she said. “Following my undergraduate years, I hope to attend James Madison University’s Master Physician’s Assistant Program, pass the PANCE exam, and ultimately become a Physician’s Assistant.”
Jenkins notes she may even return to the Tri-City area in the future, where she hopes to help make the community a better place to live and raise a family.
“To know that I can make a positive impact on another person’s life is rewarding to me. I hope to return to the Tri-city area to give back to the community that has greatly influenced my life,” she said. “I have been considering returning to Southside Regional Medical Center as a PA because that hospital, in particular, has had such an impact in my life during my summers volunteering.”
Jenkins is excited to gain new experiences, meet new people, and attend classes that will benefit her future career. She also looks forward to being more independent and taking on adulthood in college.
“I think my parents have definitely prepared me for the next chapter in my life,” she said.
As her senior year quickly comes to a close, Jenkins has some words of advice for upcoming Colonial seniors:
“Do not slack off, but also do not stress yourself too much. Stay on top of college applications and scholarship due dates,” she said. “But most importantly, have fun and make memories that you will look back on when you are 40 years old. Enjoy your time at CHHS, because senior year flies by and if you don’t absorb every minute, you will definitely miss it.”
Jenkins also wishes to thank the many people who have helped propel her toward success.
“I would like to thank everyone - God, my family, friends, and the staff at CHHS, but most importantly my mom,” she said. “Without her I would not be where I am today. She has been the one to help me whenever I was lost and could not make an important decision or when I was drowning in homework and having an emotional breakdown.”
Jenkins also shouts out her stepdad, brother, great grandma, nana, papa, uncle, and aunt for their support and belief in her.
“Aside from my family and friends, several teachers have helped me grow along the way, including Mrs. Creasey, Mrs. Grammer, Mrs. Smith, and Ms. Strickler,” she added. “A big shout out goes to my amazing ‘Go-To Lady’ and role model, Ms. Kristin Crowder. She look me under her wing like I was one of her own children; she never let me give up and always went the extra mile to help in any ‘crisis’ situation.”
In June, Jenkins will join the other nine students who were awarded Senior of the Month at a Colonial Heights Education Foundation-sponsored “Senior of the Month” banquet, where the honorees will receive a $500 scholarship from the Colonial Heights Loyal Order of the Moose.