Striving under pressure

Senior spotlight: Kathy Truong


Tiara Soppe

Kathy Truong ‘21 manages to stay upbeat amidst her heavy course load. “I definitely will miss just being a kid during high school because I know during college there will be a lot of pressure and responsibility, whereas during high school you can still have fun with your friends and mess around.”

Tiara Soppe, Reporter

Throughout high school, senior Kathy Truong has been one to stay behind the scenes but make moves in silence; Truong has maintained a cumulative GPA (grade point average) of a 4.0, challenged herself in classes, and participated in many activities including playing tennis. 

Truong is reserved and quiet; while you might not see her at West games, she instead spends her time studying and volunteering. Truong keeps active in various clubs such as Art Club, Leo Club, and National Honor Society. She is a senior class officer and known for her senior superlative, smarty pants. She also participates in the student hunger drive and a writing editor for the yearbook.

Truong said, “I don’t personally think I’m the smartest person at this school, but I think because I’ve been labeled as a smart person, I feel like there is always this pressure to keep up with that, especially for my family. They just assume I’m doing well so I feel bad if I’m not doing well, and that’s kind of tough.” 

Senior year has been a crazy ride for everyone. Despite all of the setbacks and unexpected circumstances, Truong has managed to stay strong. 

Truong stated, “My biggest accomplishment has been being able to balance everything because it’s been a crazy year. I thought junior year would be the hardest year, but senior year is definitely my hardest year. I just have a lot to balance because at the beginning of the year I didn’t even have Yearbook as an actual class so I had to do that outside of my four other classes. Sometimes I did the work for Yearbook during my lunch period.”

This year, Truong has juggled AP Calculus, AP English and Literature, along with other core classes. She ultimately decided to major in accounting. Truong plans on attending the University of Iowa to become a certified public accountant or auditor. Along with Truong’s acceptance into the University of Iowa, she was offered two scholarships. She received $1,000 per year for being admitted into the business program and another for her heavy course load. 

“Sophomore year, I had no idea what I wanted to be so I thought maybe I should start exploring more classes. I knew I wanted to do something in math because I didn’t really like English, but I also hate science so that was conflicting. I thought about being an engineer but my mom mentioned accounting, so I took a couple classes on it. I did well and liked the classes which led to my interest in accounting and I hope to attain my bachelors degree. Overall, my goal is to have a job that doesn’t take over my life because I don’t really want to miss out on life. I just want a good work and life balance.”

As senior year comes to a close, Truong reminisces on her four years. This senior year has been completely different than any other with more restrictions and less celebrations. 

“This year, I’m sad because I can’t normally do the stuff I’ve participated in like the student hunger drive and the Festival of Trees where I always volunteer, but neither of those things ran this past year. Also, it’s obviously my senior year and it sucks that most of it was divided between A and B days, so I wasn’t able to see my friends.”

One thing Truong says she will miss about high school is the friendships she has made. Senior Erika Contreras has been a long time friend of Truong since second grade. The two friends have shared many memories within 10 years. Despite not being able to talk or hangout every day, they both know they still have each other and life gets busy sometimes.

Contreras said, “I love how whenever I’ve had an issue or something going on in my life, she’s always been there. The sense of security and welcoming that oozes from her is crazy! She’s been beyond a caring person, not only to me, but also anyone around her. I can see her going far and doing great things in the years to come!” 

Contreras adds, “She’s one of the most helpful, kind, hardworking, creative, intelligent, and caring person I know”

Truong has had a long and challenging high school career. Between academics, sports, and extracurricular activities, Truong has excelled. Especially, when her senior year has been filled with nothing but difficulty and change.