NEXT GENERATION: Emily puts best foot forward

Note to readers: Diocesan guidelines prohibit the publication of last names, parents and siblings full names, and any other personal information for people younger than 18.

Emily loves being involved in many activities, but the one she loves the most is dancing. She has made many good friends in dance, including teachers and other girls. Most importantly, it has taught to never give up.

You enjoy ballet and contemporary dance and have been dancing since age 4. How did you get involved in dancing and why is it so special?

I first got involved in dance because my mom signed me up, and from there I fell in love with it. Dance is special to me because over the years I have learned to express myself without using words, just with dance. Another reason dance is very special to me is because of all of my friends and teachers. My teacher has taught me so much over the years and she is one of my biggest role models. Many of my best friends are the girls I dance with.

 You have performed in “The Nutcracker” at the Stanley Center for the Arts for the last 10 years and are a company member in the Mohawk Valley Performing Arts. Describe what it feels like to be on stage in front of a couple of thousand people.

Dancing in front of over a thousand people is one of my favorite parts of dance. When I step out on stage to dance in front of all these people I feel happy to be sharing what I love with thousands of people. Many people get nervous to go out on stage, but for me I have always been too excited for my nerves to get in the way. Dancing in “The Nutcracker” is my favorite thing to do and I look forward to it all year round.

What is the one major lesson that being involved in dancing has taught you?

Dance has taught me to never give up. Dance has taught me this because many of the steps we do in dance can take many days to get the hang of, and you need to keep working on it or you will never be able to do it. Another way dance has taught me to never give up is when it comes to finding out my role in “The Nutcracker.” Although I may not always end up with the part I wanted, I can’t give up on my goals and I need to keep trying hard so the next year I have a better chance at getting the part I want.

Before the pandemic, you were involved in school activities. You’re on the varsity tennis team, sing in the chorus and are a member of the International Club. Why do you participate in so many activities?

I like to participate in many activities because it keeps me busy and helps me make many new friends. I also really like all of the activities I do and they teach me important lessons.

Please describe what the International Club is and what you’ve learned being a member of it.

On International Day, many foreign exchange students come to my school. The International Club’s job is to prepare for their arrival. For example, I am on the decoration committee. What I will be doing is help decorate the school to make it look nice for the exchange students. Many of the juniors and seniors take the exchange students around with them throughout the school day.  

You’re an honor student at school and might consider becoming a teacher. Why does that appeal to you?

I might consider being an elementary school teacher because I really like being around little kids. I think it would be fun to spend time with the children and teach them in creative ways.  

You love trips to Florida and going to Enchanted Forest / Water Safari. What is the biggest reason you love those places?

I love going to Florida because I love the beach and the sun. My favorite thing to do in Florida is spend time swimming at the pool and lying in the sand at the ocean. I also love going to Water Safari. I have gone to Water Safari every year since I was 2, and I love going on the water slides.

You work at the parish festival in the food tent with your parents. Why do you like working at the festival?

I like working at the festival because it is a way to give back to my church. I also like to spend time with the other people that go to Mount Caramel. 

As you learn more about your faith, what is the one thing that stands out the most for you about our religion?

The thing that stands out most to me is God. This stands out to me because I find learning about God is very interesting.

Many kids don’t talk about faith with their friends. If your best friend was to ask you what’s the big deal about being a Catholic, what would you tell him or her?

I would tell her that being a Catholic is important because it makes me feel connected to God, which is a very important thing. 

What is the one thing people should know about Emily?

I am very kind and I really care for my friends and family. I also am very passionate about the things and people I love.

Emily S.

Age: 14.

Things you like to do: Dance, hang out with friends, shop and sing.

Favorite subject in school: Spanish.

Favorite books: Realistic fiction.

Favorite musical genre and artist: Country music, and my favorite singer is Thomas Rhett.