Katlyn Edwards is Youth of Year

Gifted both academically and athletically, Katlyn Edwards is captain of the TCHS Varsity Volleyball Team and a leader among her peers. Photo by Cherished Memories.

Gifted both academically and athletically, Katlyn Edwards is captain of the TCHS Varsity Volleyball Team and a leader among her peers. Photo by Cherished Memories.

Don’t let that cute face fool you. Katlyn Edwards is a bright, serious, academically- and athletically-driven student who aspires to become a civil engineer . . . “full of philosophical questions and crazy ideas.”

A senior at Temescal Canyon High School, Katlyn is the daughter of Terri and Kevin Edwards. Born and raised in Canyon Lake, she was Wee Miss Canyon Lake Talent in 2004 and Little Miss Canyon Lake Talent in 2006. She was involved with Cotillion in 2009 and 2010, and has been an artist with Anita Harris in the Art Association’s Home Studios Tour from 2012 to 2014.

One of her nominator’s writes:

“Katlyn is truly a pleasure to have as a student because she is an individual who automatically brightens the atmosphere with her engaging personality. She is an extremely hard worker and very responsible when it comes to her studies. She has challenged herself to take rigorous courses at TCHS where she carries a 4.70 GPA and is in the top five percent of her class.

“As motivated and driven as Katlyn is academically, you will find her applying the same qualities in her involvement outside of the classroom as well. Katlyn has competed at the varsity level for both the (TCHS) Volleyball and the Track/Field programs since her freshman year, and has served as a captain of both.

“She is an active member of Student Leadership and has taken the lead on organizing events to promote school spirit, including managing the student section, the ‘Blue Hole.’”

“Outside of school, she has taken her love for sports and donated her time to coaching with the Special Olympics organization. Katlyn has a pure and caring heart, and it is amazing to see the work she has done with Special Olympics throughout her high school career . . .

“Katlyn is an example of an exceptional ‘well-rounded’ youth that Canyon Lake and myself as a resident of Canyon Lake would be proud to have representing our city . . . She was born and raised in Canyon Lake and is a ‘true’ Canyon Laker . . . I know she will represent our city with honor, pride and humility.”

With regard to Katlyn’s academic qualifications, another nominator comments, “Academically, Katlyn is absolutely outstanding. She is able to grasp complex engineering concepts quickly. She easily applies core subject knowledge from her math and science classes to engineering problems . . . One of her best qualities academically is her thirst to learn more and acquire new skills. When she finishes her work ahead of time, she takes the opportunity to learn more and develop her engineering skills further. Katlyn is not the kind of student who settles for ‘good enough.’”

“As a student and peer in the classroom, Katlyn is a shining star . . . She is attentive, inquisitive, excited to learn and appreciates the effort her teachers put into their classrooms. Katlyn is looked up to by her peers due to her academic skills, but also due to her friendly, understanding and patient attitude when it comes to tutoring and helping others in the class.

“Quite honestly, I cannot say enough good things about this amazing young woman. I fully expect to hear nothing but great things from her in the future. With her commitment, drive, attitude and passion, there is no limit to what she can achieve.”

To hear from Katlyn herself, please see the following essay.


Everything’s Coming up Roses

By Katlyn Edwards

The anticipation had killed me over the past few months from not knowing if I had been accepted into one of the most prestigious engineering schools in the country. So when I got home from school on that Wednesday afternoon, I was very excited seeing the envelope from Rose-Hulman (Institute of Technology) sitting on my desk.

When I opened that letter with my parents, I felt this sense of pride seeing that I had been accepted. All of the hard work, the balancing of practices and the late hours studying had paid off. Immediately I put on the adorable spectacles that came inside and I had my mom take a picture to share with my friends and family. Those glasses stayed on my nose the rest of the day, and I was able to see what it was like to have a future as a Fighting Engineer.

I’m going to be graduating high school this June, and I’m going to be graduating from a community that I have helped shape and build. As part of the National Honors Society, I am involved in tutoring students during school on a variety of subjects. With my math and science background, I tend to get the kids that are looking for more advanced help with these subjects. Seeing it “click” has become very rewarding to me. I especially like when they come back and show me a test that we worked hard preparing for.

At the beginning of my high school career, I went to the football games and sat in our student section, the “Blue Hole,” with about forty other students. I loved the atmosphere and wanted others to feel the same way that I had when we made the winning touchdown against our rival team. It became my mission over the next four years to make Friday night lights something everybody wanted to attend.

In ASB, I was appointed Commissioner of Athletics. One of my responsibilities was to increase the student involvement in both sports and school activities. I can now say that I am the girl leading over three hundred spirited students. As a captain of the Varsity Volleyball and Varsity Track and Field team, I have contributed both my leadership and athletic abilities to these programs.

Four years on the varsity level, in both sports, has allowed me to go to league finals twice and move onto CIF with my team. My volleyball team has also been involved with the Special Olympics each year. We help train and partner with the student athletes for their events, and I enjoy seeing all of the ribbons and medals that they come home with. My involvement with school has shaped me to become the friendly, motivated, and outgoing person I am today.

When I began looking at colleges, I wanted to find a school that had three things. I wanted a university that had a strong math and science curriculum where I could study Civil Engineering, where I could be involved, both academically and within the student body, and where I could continue my athletic careers.

Being able to bring what I have accomplished at my high school and apply it to my future at Rose-Hulman is something I would love to do. Like high school, my primary focus at Rose-Hulman would be my academics. Contributing my intellect in classroom discussions and my passion for learning is something I’m very excited for.

I want to immerse myself in my studies and learn about engineering, specifically Civil Engineering. With this, I would be able to bring new ideas and perspectives that I have learned at Rose-Hulman to my chosen career path. This last summer, I had an opportunity to intern with an engineering firm in San Diego, California named Coffman Specialties.

Working for them, really opened my eyes to the plight of America’s deteriorating infrastructure. There is a great need right now, not just for repair and replacement of existing roadways, but for innovation to make things better. I really feel that I can receive this transformation at Rose-Hulman.

Furthering my athletic career at a highly competitive school has been a dream of mine as well since I started playing volleyball in middle school and throwing shot put and discus my freshman year. I feel my participation in these programs will bring an extra level of competition to the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference.

Continuing to involve myself with the athletic programs on campus I would love to one day help lead Rose-Hulman’s “Herd” as I had once did “The Blue Hole.” Seeing school spirit as a huge part of my life and a part of the college experience, I’m willing to invest in being a Fighting Engineer the same way I had being a Titan. Most of all, I want to make the best of my college experience and the experience of the other brilliant students that will be attending Rose-Hulman with me in the fall.



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Donna Ritchie