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Alumni Spotlight
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Arica Zimmer - Class of 2013 

 

Why did your family chose Kennedy for your education?

My family chose Kennedy because they wanted to give me a well-rounded education and they always supported Catholic School education. My parents knew that Kennedy had the kind of curriculum that could challenge me and prepare me for college. Kennedy also has a reputation of being like a family, and it truly felt like one during my time there.


What is your favorite Kennedy memory? 

My favorite Kennedy memory would have to be working stage crew for all of the events Kennedy had, especially the Kennedy Center Honors shows. I loved being part of the various shows and getting to see everyone’s talents shine through. Mr. Hoover got me involved in theatre at Kennedy and I am forever grateful to him for all of my wonderful memories. The skills I learned from working the shows have even helped me beyond Kennedy and I have had the chance to use them with some of my different jobs. 


Did you have a teacher or class that was a major influence on you? 

So many of my teachers and classes had a major influence on me. One teacher that stands out would have to be Mr. Klockner. I had Mr. Klockner for at least one class every year from 8th grade all the way to my senior year. His “Philosophy and Ethics” and “Problems of Evil” classes were two of my favorites; they forced us to really think outside of the box and challenge ourselves. He made his classes very engaging and he always showed support to all of his students, both in and out of the classroom.


Education/Professional Experience: John F. Kennedy, Class of 2013; Walsh University: Bachelor’s of Arts in Psychology and Sociology, Class of 2017; Master’s of Arts in School Counseling, Class of 2019.


What career did you choose and tell us a little bit about how you got there: I have just started my first year of my career as a licensed school counselor, and I love it! I chose to pursue this path because of the Psychology class I took at Kennedy with Mr. Gillen. I thought the subject material was fascinating and I wanted to continue studying it in college. During my undergraduate years, I learned about the different fields you could pursue with a psychology degree and I decided on school counseling. I realized that I wanted to work in a school setting, specifically with high school students. I am currently working at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, OH.


What professional accomplishment are you most proud of?

My biggest professional accomplishment is landing my dream job after receiving my Master’s degree. I appreciate the education and experiences I received at Kennedy and I knew that I wanted to work in a similar environment that instills the same morals and values in its students. At St. Vincent-St. Mary, I am happy to say that I also have the opportunity of helping them institute their very own House System. The House System at Kennedy started my sophomore year, and I loved the experience (go St. Albert House!). It is surreal that I now get to help the school I am working for navigate through the process of starting their own House System. 


What is a specific piece of advice you would give to a Kennedy senior? 

Cherish every minute of your senior year; it will go by faster than you think. Life after high school will seem intimidating at first, but it is exciting and filled with new opportunities.The world is a big place, and there are so many amazing places to explore. Travel whenever you can and take the chance of immersing yourself in a new culture and seeing how other people live their lives. Keep yourself open to new experiences and new people; don’t be afraid to say “yes” to something that takes you outside of your comfort zone. You might make some new lifelong friends along the way!

  

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