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8 | Senior Feature | Hawkeye | 12 June 2013

12 June 2013 | Hawkeye | Senior Feature | 9

Individuality Eight seniors who show us it’s our differences

Louis Mouton D

espite his many appearances on HBN, not many people know Louis Mouton as a fighting artists, a reputation he received with his involvement in art at MTHS and martial arts. Mouton is a Cambodian African American that came to MTHS halfway into his junior year. He lives with his mother, step dad, and little brother, and he has found that he enjoys the school and feels welcomed. During his time here, Mouton has become the Art

that bring us together Stories and photos by Olivia Driscoll, Erick Yanzon, Daniil Oliferovskiy, Paxtyn Merten, Gurminder SIngh, Luke Thurber and Jannon Roque

For videos for each of the featured seniors, go to www.thehawkeye.org. Or scan this QR code with your smart device.

Hawkeye staff

Club president and revived the club by recreating the art murals. As the president of Art Club, Mouton has collaborated with art teacher Tim Cashman to reinvent the art hallway. Together, the two divided up students into nearly 20 teams and allowed them to demonstrate their abilities by putting their ideas and images on the walls. Louis recently became active in art and, “[the art murals] have really been my first painting project and this has been my first project of this size.” Considering that the art hallway is Mouton’s first painting job, it’s remarkable how well the art murals are turning out. Unlike renowned artist like Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, Mouton is unfamiliar with painting. Instead, he enjoys the simplicity of art. “I mainly just draw with pencil on paper, [and] I carry a sketch book around,” Mouton said. Contrary to his recent interest in art, Mouton has been active in martial arts much longer. It is something he has done since he was seven years old and because his step dad is a kung-fu instructor. When thinking about whether he likes martial arts or painting more, Mouton was undecided. “It’s really split down the middle between art or martial arts. Martial arts is something I’ve been doing since I was seven, [but] I’ve been into art in the past

couple of years [and] it’s really my passion.” Likewise, Mouton is forced to split up his time between both talents. Mouton attends martial arts lessons several times a week and, “I try to draw a couple hours a day before I go to bed.” With graduation also coming up, many seniors may be worried about how they will fit their hobbies into the busy bustle of preparing for college or finding employment, but not Mouton. He plans to carry on his talents and passions past high school. “I intend to go into the Army after I graduate and I’ll use the money I get from the military to pay for art school.” It’s clear that Mouton’s martial arts skill will come in handy in the Army, but some may wonder why he decided to join the military of all options. Mouton answers, “I feel like it’s something that I’ve wanted to do.” His desire to serve in the military may be rooted in his family’s history in serving in the Armed Forces. He’s had family members from both sides serve in the Army, the Navy, and the Navy Seals, and Mouton plans to carry on that legacy. It’s not every day that you see an artist serve in the military and pulling fighting moves. Even da Vinci didn’t serve as a soldier.

Taylor Johnson

T

aylor Johnson may be the ultimate “Belieber” (Justin Beiber fan), in fact she is the ultimate fan girl. On his birthday she baked Beiber a cake and gave it out to other students. However, it wouldn’t be surprising if one day she was also famous. The past couple years Johnson has been involved in several drama productions. Last year she was in the musical “All Shook Up” where she was in the chorus. This year she has been in the spring production of “Musical Comedy Murders of the 1940s” in which she played Marjorie Baverstock. She was also in the musical showcase “Don’t Stop the Beat,” which she performed and worked behind the scenes in. After she graduates, she will attend California Lutheran University in “a land far, far away” called Thousand Oaks, Calif. Johnson said she would like to be an actress even though it may seem unrealistic. Her advice for others with her same aspiration is, “If you want to be an actor I’d say don’t give up on that, but have a back up plan.” Johnson’s

BryaN Wyss

W

e all know him as the guy in the wheelchair, but there’s more about senior Bryan Wyss that you may not know. He is one of Terrace’s most inspirational students. Living in a wheelchair is not easy, and even sometimes it takes him a while to do things, Wyss positively said, “It’s really easy to maneuver. People here are really nice. They respect you if you are in a wheelchair.” He served as the men’s basketball manager for three years from his freshman to junior year. He was the one in charge of keeping stats, and managing the clock and practices. This year, he joined the track and field team and qualified for the 3A men’s state championships. He finished third in the 3A men’s wheelchair javelin throw with a toss of 16 ft. 8 in. He enjoyed going to a lot of different schools and meeting different people besides his team. “Track was really fun,” Wyss said, “I got to build a lot of friendships. It was a great experience.” Wyss is going to the VOICE program (Vocational Opportunities In Community Experiences) for three years until he’s 21. This program provides comprehensive instruction and vocational experiences to prepare students for adult life. Students in this program also receive assistance in career exploration, job search, job applications, and interviewing skills. After this program, he will attend Edmonds Community College. For his culminating project, he job shadowed a librarian at Mountlake Terrace Elementary School. Besides school and sports, his hobbies include going on the computer, watching movies, playing games, and he also enjoys reading sometimes. His favorite experiences in school are some-

thing that most students don’t usually appreciate. Wyss likes going to school everyday, meeting new friends, and learning different things. As an advice for the upcoming freshmen, Wyss said, “Just do your work, stay busy, [and] have a great time because it will be over before you know it.” “I’m going to miss talking to my friends, going to different classes, and mostly the assemblies. They are so fun,” Wyss commented. Wyss is sure one to be missed by the whole student body by his optimism and kind presence.

Sera Motokana

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veryone knows Sera Motokana as one of the funniest and positive seniors in the school, but little do they know that she’s also one of the nicest and thoughtful students. She is involved in various clubs and activities in MTHS. She has been part of FCCLA for two years and a representative this year. She is also the promotional officer of Eco Club, vice president of Honor Society, and she is also involved in Teens Against Tobacco Use (TATU). Motokana is going to Lake Washington Institute of Technology next fall, and was accepted in the nursing program. She is attending college for four years to receive her certification to be a registered nurse, and plan to start working at nursing homes. For her culminating project, she shadowed a nurse at an adult family home,

where she helped taking care of the residents, and learned skills that pertain to her future goals as a nurse. She thought that exploring the nursing field has helped her really understand what it takes to become one. “Doing it as a senior project opened up my eyes to realizing that this is something I want to do in the future,” Motokana said. Her parents are one of her inspirations to becoming a nurse because they are both in the nursing field. “I saw how much they love their jobs and I really like to help people, so I decided to go with the nursing field to help others and to make them feel better,” she continued. She took the Health Care Professions intra-district class in Edmonds-Woodway High School her junior year, where she

other dream job is being a teacher; she said it would be cool to get to work with kids. One of the biggest parts of Johnson’s life is church. At her church she works with little kids and takes care of the babies. This could also help her with her hopes of being a teacher. There are several things Johnson has done to help her with her goals and become who she is. She says that being in plays and musicals have helped her come out of her box, try new things and meet new people. Something that she has also been involved with here at MTHS is Mix It up. Mix It Up has helped her talked to people she never would have and make several friends. Another thing Johnson has been doing to prepare for her future is modeling. She is involved with Seattle Talent Agency and also takes a few acting classes there. “I hate school,” Johnson said jokingly, but for many people hating school isn’t a joke. Getting involved in activities is a way to make high school a little more enjoyable. Whether Johnson ends up being on the big screen or teaching the next generation, she will do it with determination and put care and effort into it.

Gifton Okoronkwo

I took the Washington State Nursing Assistant Certification examination, and became a certified CNA. As the youngest of the family, one of the hardest challenges that she has encountered was when her older brother moved back to Fiji five years ago. “We were really close and it was sad because I don’t get to see him anymore,” she said. “We talk in the phone, but it’s not the same.” She is also a Link Leader this year, so as an advice to the upcoming freshmen, she said, “Just focus on school because that is your life for the next four years, and I know some freshmen that struggle with school so try to get good grades, do good in school and make new friends.” She encouraged all students to, “Expand your horizons in life and in school,” she added. Motokana’s jokes and laugh are sure to be missed as she goes on pursuing her dreams in college.

n his senior year, Gifton Okoronkwo won the state title for triple jump. It was his first year on track. It turned out that he had a knack for his newly found sport. He started trying out and messing with track only last summer. He was convinced to become a triple jumper by two other triple jumpers – his sister Chinne Okoronkwo, who also won state in triple jump, and his friend Tye Esparza, who won 8th in triple jump. “The number one thing that helped me was the support at home with my family, the great sibling support with my sister, I had great support from all my coaches, and from other contestants from other teams and from our team,” Okoronkwo said. With this he made it to state which he thought was a lot of fun. He liked the new experience of state. Okoronkwo said it was a lot better than the national competition because state had more of a family aspect because he knew most of the people there. He also has he teammates that want him to do his best and he wants them to do their best too. At nationals he was just trying it out to see if he liked it and did not really know anyone there. This year he had one advantage not many athletes have: his sister to help him out. He says that his sister is extremely beneficial because she is a real veteran and can give him tips plus watch his marks. He also finds it helpful because he can take his game home and talk to his sister about what he can do to become a better jumper and new techniques

he can try. This year track has not just made him a better jumper but he also thinks it has made him a better person. “It has improved my focus and my work ethic a lot I know I have to work real hard to get where I am and where I want to be.” With his new found track talent, many wondered if track is something he plans to do in the future “I do plan on doing track when I leave Mountlake Terrace,” he said. He also wants to pursue other interests in engineering too. Okoronkwo is involved in many other clubs and sports besides track. These extracurricular activities include DECA, in which he was the treasurer for, Mix-It-Up club, robotics, which he was in all four of his years at MTHS. Okoronkwo also played basketball in his freshman year, JV soccer during his freshman year and varsity soccer during his sophomore and junior years. Okoronkwo also shined in the classroom. He took AP classed, such as AP calculus and physics. He did all of this while maintaining a near 3.0 GPA. Okoronkwo could not have asked for a better senior year. He said he has no regrets at Mountlake Terrace and is excited to leave. He is looking forward to a wonderful track filled future. “I think all great things must come to an end and I’m ready for the future.”

Volume 28.9  
Volume 28.9  

The 9th issue of the 2012+2013 Hawkeye

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