Eric VanDeWall: “…Senior Year Because That is When You Really Find Out Who You Are”

Justice Herrick, Staff Writer

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Eric VanDeWall is a senior at Cuba-Rushford Middle-High School. He considers himself as “a compassionate and giving person although some people would say different at first glance because I look miserable in the halls.” He is very athletic and has short brown hair. Eric has gone on many trips and has done many school-sports. He has gone on many trips to many countries. His dream in life is to work in the medical field. According to most people, Eric is not very tall. He says that the event that changed his life is his senior year. He says that because “that is when you really find out who you are.” When I conducted an interview with Eric, he was very professional and adult. We sat down and we proceeded with the interview like normal. There were no joke answers or responses that weren’t appropriate. He knew what to say on every question and I appreciated that. Eric has many dreams and aspirations for college and his life after he is done with college.

During high school, Eric has participated in many sports. In his freshman year, he did cross country, joined the swim team, and participated in track and field. In his sophomore year, he was still on the swim team, did track and field again, and joined the cheerleading team. He joined the cheerleading team to try something new. As a junior, he played no sports. Instead, he decided to focus mostly on lifting and using the weight room, in preparation for his senior year. In the beginning of his senior year, he joined the football team. He didn’t play football other than his senior due to him playing many other sports. He played football all fall until the sport was over. During the season, he played wide receive and cornerback. Mr Fee said that, on the football team, he is a good teammate and talented but is rather small for a football player. Mr. Fee wishes he would’ve joined the football team earlier than he did. He said that he didn’t plan on doing anymore sports this year and will enjoy the rest of his senior year. Outside of school, he snowboards, skis, and rides dirt bikes. His favorite places to going snowboarding and skiing are Holiday Valley, which is located in Ellicottville, NY. He also likes going up to the Adirondacks, once a year, to go to Mt. Snow in Vermont. His favorite dirk bike tracks are located in Batavia, Rushford, and some are even in Pennsylvania.

Eric would like to pursue the medical field for his career. He likes the health care field and his father is a doctor who deals with arthritis patients, but he hasn’t pressured Eric to become a doctor. Eric’s dad has had the biggest influence in his life. His dad took him on all the trips and has supported all the choices he has made in life. He says he will be able to handle the stress of being a doctor due to already having to study and do homework in high school. Eric currently participates in a program called New Visions. This program allows people to see what it is like to be a doctor and lets you know if you’re a people person or not. You also get to learn about clinical rotations here. After high school, he is going to go to the State University of New York at Geneseo. He will go to obtain his Bachelor’s degree and will be in the graduating class of 2021. He will go to Geneseo because he felt like it was a good learning environment and the college has prestige. He said that he wants to “…know new people instead of the same old people in Cuba” during college. He doesn’t know what type of doctor he wants to be but he’ll decided at a later date. After college, he would like to move to the Adirondacks and raise a family. His goal in life is to give a good life to his kids, and to be known as a good person.

Eric has done many things outside of school. Every year, he and his family go to the Adirondacks. They usually go to Lake George and do activities around that area. His favorite place to go, as I mentioned above, is Mt. Snow. You can ski and snowboard here. He loves the landscape of Mt. Snow and the whole Adirondacks, in general. If it isn’t obvious already, he loves the outdoors. He hasn’t just visited the Adirondacks however. He has visited New Zealand and the Caribbeans. He told me that he would love to visit Europe and Asia because he hasn’t been to those continents yet. Outside of traveling, he works at a summer camp called Camp Joy. This camp is mostly for disabled and handicapped kids. This camp allows them to enjoy themselves without worrying about their disability. Eric said he loves working at this camp because it gives him a good feeling to help give others joy and happiness. He likes helping others and the feeling it gives him, at the camp. He said he has learned many valuable lessons from the camp, but the one that has resonated with him the most is that you should be blessed with what you have.

Many teachers and staff have many things to say about Eric VanDeWall. Mr. Fee, his football coach, has said the following things about Eric. Mr. Fee says that he would describe Eric as a creative, intelligent, independent kid. He also said that he feels that Eric has some swagger. He told me he’d most remember Eric because he is a good dresser, he’s outgoing, and he never cared what others thought of him. He said that if you didn’t know Eric, you need to know that he is “stupendous”, and has a smile that will light up a room. Mr. Ackerman, his guidance counselor, has words he would like to share about Eric VanDeWall. Mr. Ackerman says that Eric is very friendly, a hard worker, and is very responsible for his age. He will always remember that Eric was a Cleveland Browns fan. If could describe him to a stranger, he would say that is very easy going, he is friendly and personable, and I quote “he is just a real good guy.”

Eric is a great kid who is destined for success. He has the motivation and the morals to succeed in life. He is very athletic and most likely continue this after high school. I and the people I interviewed believe he has a bright future ahead. At the end of my interview, Eric was very professional for a teenager and shook my hand. Not many teenagers would do this, but it left me with the feeling that he was an experienced adult!

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Eric VanDeWall: “…Senior Year Because That is When You Really Find Out Who You Are”