Transcript: 8 CCS Students Share Their Future Plans

Lauren McNeese, Features Editor

David O’Neil, Freshman



LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


DO: I would like to graduate CCS with all honors and then proceed to go to WestPoint military school and become an officer in the army.


LM: Do you care to expound? What sparked your interest in the army?


DO: I come from a military family, and it has always been a part of my life, so I would like to be a drill sergeant.


LM: So a lot of your family is in the military? Do you want to talk about their rankings and positions and what led them to that?


DO: My brother is an E4. He never could get college that well so he joined the army, and now he’s pretty high up. My dad was a nuke engineer in the navy, my grandfather was a repairman. And all my uncles have served as well, so it’s been a tradition.


LM: Do you think that all of your brothers will follow that path as well?


DO: No. Just me.


Anna Jipping, Freshman


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


AJ: Well, I definitely want to go to college of course. But it changes a lot, I’m not really sure what I want to do exactly. But, right now I really want to do something in the medical field, like a doctor for cancer or something. I’ve just been thrown a lot of ideas about how cancer is hurting a lot of people’s lives, and I think it would be pretty cool if I could like change that.


LM: Is there a specific example or experience that you would like to share about what made you interested in oncology?


AJ: I’ve had a lot of people in my life who I have known who have had cancer. Like, my grandma, when I was in third grade, she died from it, and it was really hard and it made me really sad because I was in third grade and I didn’t have a lot of time to spend with her. And I had just really wished that there was some more stuff that they could do to keep her alive longer. And my teacher, Mrs. MacDougal--now I have Mrs. Gallagher--but Mrs. MacDougal just got cancer. It’s just a lot of people, and I feel like I’ve just seen more of it. It just makes me really sad, and I want to do something about it.


LM: Has your dad’s biology class inspired you at all as well?


AJ: A little bit. Now I know more about cancer and how it starts and the way it works. And I feel like if I could learn more about it, it would be really great.


Gracen Landry, Sophomore


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


GL: Well, I want to be a structural engineer. That’s like a type of architectural engineer, who works with the architects and pretty much looks over the plans and their job is to make sure that everything works--that it’s the right material, size, structure, etc. You go over it and go over all of the math. If I end up not liking that job, then I will have already at least gotten a degree in architecture in general, which could lead to a lot of other jobs. But I do want to go into engineering, and have wanted to since fifth grade actually.


Cade Lowrance, Sophomore


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


CL: So the plan for the future: I’m going to hopefully go to a really good prestigious law school, like Georgetown, which is 14th best in the United States, or George Washington, which is 19th best in the United States. If I cannot make it into one of those two, because their GPA needs are very high, I’d like to go to Vanderbilt, or somewhere in DC, maybe American. The plan then is to get my major in accounting and minor in political science. After that, I’m going to go get my juris doctorate, and while I am in college I will have a job working at some sort of firm, probably as a paralegal. After college I am going to go out. Start my own family. Start my own firm. Rule the world. In that order. But, between that time I’d like to become a judge, I’d like to become a senator, I’d like to have 4-8 children. (laughs) Something like that. Sounds like a good life. Oh, and of course I’m making millions a year because of my amazing law skills. Governmental law.


LM: With this projected plan, what age do you foresee yourself becoming POTUS. You didn’t mention that? Do you still want to be President?


CL: Good question. Well, I’m going to run probably as soon as I can. The 2040 election? I’ll be 38. But I might not have the experience yet as far as politics goes. I at least want to be a senator by the time I’m in my forties. That’s all I know so far though.


Caelan Austin, Junior


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


CA: So I know that after I graduate I want to major in theatre and minor in education. I’m not sure where that will lead me, if it will lead me to like professional acting, or like a drama teacher or a producer. Another thing that I have been looking into recently is media for Broadway, so like interviews and, which is a big thing in New York City; they have a whole website and they update news on productions. I am looking into Texas State University right now because they have a really good media program as well as a really good theatre program. I would also be interested in becoming a high school theatre teacher. Mrs. Schimpf has really inspired me, and I would love to do the same for other people, so this semester I am aiding for Ellie Smoak to see if that is something I would be interested in doing.


LM: Can you think of a specific moment that kind of sparked this interest in theatre?


CA: My brothers have been going to CCS for a while, and I would always get so excited to see the high school shows, and I just was enthralled with everything that was happening. In sixth grade I auditioned for the musical, and I didn’t make it. That was kind of like a turning point for me, like I was pretty devastated because it was something that I wanted to do but I wasn’t good enough, so from that point on I started taking voice lessons, I started taking acting lessons, I went to summer camps, and and then I started making the shows- since then I have only gotten better. This year, I’m in the high school musical and I’m in advanced theatre and I like do shows outside of school as well. I love doing anything theatre- related, and anything that I can get my hands on I want to do.


LM: Can you identify a specific aspect of theatre which you enjoy? What is it about theatre?


CA: The whole collaborative process of it. For a lot of things I feel like you can depend on yourself, like if you’re going to major in English that’s just something that you can depend on yourself for. Theatre isn’t like that. You have to work with other people, you have to find what works best for them and what works best for you, because if you’re in a scene with someone, you can’t just depend on yourself, you have to depend on the other person as well. I like that whole aspect of theatre, that it’s collaborative. There’s no other way to get around it. I love working with other people, and you’re becoming another person, and so is the other person, and you’re creating a new relationship through these characters that you already don’t have in real life.


Haley Cochran, Junior


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


HC: After I graduate, I would love to go to UTK for nursing and become a nurse practitioner. Because as a nurse practitioner, you can go in all different types of directions, and they make great money. But the main reason I want to be a nurse is because I love helping people, and service is the spiritual gift which God has given me, and I believe that I can help people. And I just want to make money to set a stable future for both me and my children. Also in college I would love to be part of Young Life as either a leader or just helping out in some way.


LM: Are you currently involved in Young Life?


HC: Yes; I always attend, and hopefully this summer I will be a part of work crew, to clean tables and serve breakfast and all of that kind of stuff. Later down the road, from CCS and college, I just want to have stability for me and my family. And I would love to move back to Chattanooga, and set up home in Hixson, and possibly send my children to CCS, if it’s still around. Hopefully it will be. I love this school, it’s done a lot of great stuff for me and my family, and I appreciate it so much.


LM: Do you have family in the medical field?


HC: My aunt’s mother started the nursing program at Tennessee Tech University, which kind of led me to want to go into nursing, but I’ve also had a bunch of people who I know as family friends become nurses and kind of like, help me out with that.


Alex Boggs, Senior


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?


AB: I've always wanted to go to Alaska. I have lots of dreams but this one has stuck since the fourth grade, so I feel like I've got to live it a little bit. And it’s progressed from just I want to visit for six months to I might want to live there for a few years. And then last year in English we read Into the Wild and I was like “Oh my Lord, I need to go live in that bus 146.” So, now, I’m convinced I’m going to go get a dry cabin.


LM: What is a dry cabin?


AB: It doesn’t have plumbing. There’s no indoor bathroom, you have an outhouse. The other thing is, you also don’t have a shower. You have to like get water shipped in, heat it up, and use the old-timey tub. It’s a lot of work, but you’re also like off the grid, and that’s something I like. I want a small, cozy, happy life, so I’ll have a small, cozy, happy cabin. Another thing is that I want to be off on my own.


LM: Have you ever dreamed of any other non-mainstream living arrangements?

AB: A houseboat. But then I remembered how I failed physics and I do not realize the physics of keeping a houseboat afloat. I decided since I didn’t like physics, I shouldn’t live on a physics problem. So, that dream sunk.


LM: Literally.


AB: Literally, it sunk. It’s like, worse than the Titanic. I either want to teach English or be a closeted author. That is my dream. I don’t know if I’m going to get to do it or not, but I’m going to keep dreaming it. The last thing was, with Alaska, if you look up the population, there are two men to each woman. So I was like, those are good odds. But my mother pointed out that less women probably go to Alaska since it’s so cold. I also found a college up there. It’s not that expensive, it’s more expensive than UTC, but I might could do it. I might could swing it. But I’m convinced that I’m going to find myself a guy in Alaska and we are going to live in a tiny home.


Landry Halloran, Senior


LM: What do you think your life looks like after the diploma?

LH: So next year I am staying in Chattanooga because I love Chattanooga and I love my family. That’s a huge part of my life right now and I hope it’s going to be a huge part of my life in the future. I envision myself having a family and raising my kids in Chattanooga because I love it here so much. I’m most likely going to go to Covenant next year. If I could say what my dream future would be, it would be to go to Covenant for four years and then come back to CCS and work because I love CCS so much. My dream dream job would be to take Mrs. Smoak’s job-- to run student life at CCS, just because I have seen how much the administration and teachers love on the students here, and to be able to work and put back time into students like my teachers have for me would be amazing.


LM: Do you have a personal experience or example that you could give?


LH: Yeah. Last year, we had a unit in English for Mr. Slaten’s class, and we were reading Into the Wild and we literally had to interview someone and write an essay… But I was really struggling with the unit and Mr. Slaten brought me into the hallway one day and told me how he noticed how I was struggling and he told me how his family had been praying for me by name. When he said that I almost started crying, just to see how much my teachers care about me and love on me and it’s more than just throwing material at me, it’s like they actually care for me on a Spiritual level. It means a lot, and imagining myself doing that with other students is a dream that I long for.


LM: Awkward silence… I honestly didn’t know what to say to that, it seemed totally profound for a guy who offered $100 for dance skills at the last pep rally


LH: I don’t know, Lauren, what else do I want to do with my life? OH!! I want to have four children! I definitely want some sons, so I think that if I have four kids, that will give me at least one son. Hopefully. I wouldn’t mind having daughters though. If they’re like their mom. Cause their mom is going to be awesome. I’m going to marry someone who is really attractive-- to me. I want my wife to be a stay at home mom because I think that would be really awesome because my mom was a stay at home mom.


LM: Teachers oftentimes say that their career is a labor of love. How do you want to provide for four children if you are working at CCS and your wife is a stay at home mom?


LH: You know what, that’s a great question, and I will cross that bridge when I get to it. You know what, realistically, my wife’s going to be working, so. She’s going to be a lot smarter than I am, she’ll probably be a doctor or something. I say when I have a family, if I’m still living in Chattanooga, when I’m like 40 or 50, whenever I retire I’m going to want to move somewhere. I don’t know where I want to move to. I’ll probably move to Alaska with my wife. I’d say Alaska because it’s pretty cool. It’s literally freezing there. And then if I move to Alaska with my wife I wouldn’t worry about getting cold, I’d just snuggle with my wife.


LM: So are you leaving all of your children here when they start their families?


LH: Yeah. They’ll be fine. Or they can move to Alaska with us and we can be like the Alaskan bush people. There’s a TV show. That’s what we’d be like.