Adina Kirkland is sold on science. While the Huntington High School senior isn’t quite sure of the career direction she ultimately wants to take, she believes that Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts will help her sort out everything and help her grow intellectually, socially and in every other way.
“Hampshire College is absolutely gorgeous,” Ms. Kirkland said. “I was looking for an eco-friendly, rural campus with an animal behavior program, which is what I found at Hampshire. Between the hands-on learning at the on-campus farm, in depth discussions in the classrooms and numerous research and internship opportunities with professors, I know that I will be able to succeed in my major.”
Huntington senior Adina Kirkland is headed to Hampshire College in Massachusetts.
Among the colleges that the teenager considered were the University of Rhode Island, Bucknell University, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and the University of Maine, to name a few. Once she sat down and evaluated every possibility, Ms. Kirkland decided that Hampshire College offered everything she is looking for in a school.
“At this point in my life, I’m not quite sure what I want to pursue as a career,” Ms. Kirkland said. “The reason I am choosing to continue my education is to really pinpoint what drives my interests and hopefully clarify what I want to do in the future.”
Ms. Kirkland’s senior year academic schedule includes Advanced Placement Environmental Science, AP Psychology, AP Government and Politics, AP Literature and Composition and Calculus.
“Mrs. [Deborah] Beck, Mrs. [Danielle] Lusardi, Mrs. [Stacey] Byrnes and Mr. [Brian] Stellato have been some of the most influential teachers in my high school career,” Ms. Kirkland said. “Mrs. Beck was my AP Bio teacher my junior year and helped solidify my love for life science with her fun projects and early morning extra help sessions. Mrs. Lusardi taught the half year animal behavior course Huntington offers during my sophomore year and from then on, I knew it’s what I wanted to study in college. Mrs. Byrnes is currently teaching my AP Environmental Science class and has influenced me to try and live a more environmentally friendly life. Mr. Stellato has been the marching band director for my five years in the band and helped amplify and fine-tune my natural leadership skills through the program.”
A member of the Huntington Blue Devil marching band since eighth grade, Ms. Kirkland has been one of the organization’s leaders the past two years, serving as field major as a senior.
The senior has been on the Blue Devil fencing team for the past six years and served as captain of the girls’ squad this past winter. She’s also performed in the high school wind ensemble and pit orchestra for the past three years.
President of the Tri-M Music Honor Society, Ms. Kirkland is a Natural Helper and also a member of the Key Club and the English Honor Society.
Highlights of the past four years include an AP Biology Pride Award, the Blue Devil marching band winning the state championship at the Syracuse Carrier Dome and capturing the Building Bridges Award with one of her close friends this year.
“I feel very lucky to be able to call myself a Blue Devil,” Ms. Kirkland said. “I will never forget the lessons that each one of my teachers have taught me and I will continue to strengthen the friendships I have made throughout my four years here.”