The words ‘lazy’ and ‘slacker’ don’t exist in Sara Dougherty’s vocabulary. As a junior at East Grand Rapids, she prides herself at always being presentable and doing her best.
Dougherty’s hard work hasn’t been wasted – she’s received a math award, an ‘outstanding representative’ award for her Youth and Government group that sends members to Lansing each year to write and present a bill and has been nominated for a national student award by her teachers. She also maintains a 4.1 GPA and hopes to attend the University of Michigan. Although her career choice remains undecided, she holds a wide variety of career interests in government and realty.
Dougherty’s ambitious nature may have been passed down to her by the two people she looks up to the most: her mom and dad. Having a doctor for a mother and a psychologist for a father made for “interesting dinner conversations.”
“My dad came from a hard family and managed to rise to the top, while my mom manages to find humor in every situation,” Dougherty explain while running her fingers through her blonde hair. “They’re so involved in my life; they’re like a team.”
Dougherty smiles, her mind clearly flickering back to the fond memories she holds of her parents while her tone of voice displays the obvious pride she holds for her family.
Dougherty’s not all work and no play. Like a typical 16-year-old, she enjoys going to bonfires and eating frozen yogurt. She’s obsessed with fashion, a girl who avoids wearing things more than once or twice a month and houses a serious obsession with clothes. Her love for fashion was obvious; she wears trendy, blue-and-gold printed shorts with a black top and her makeup looks flawless. Later she sheepishly confesses that she might switch to a pair of leggings because of the chilly weather.
Although Sara claims to harbor no hidden talents, there’s one hidden thing she’s willing to share a lack of talent in.
“I can’t do a cartwheel,” Dougherty said laughing and gesturing wildly. “I tried and fell on my head.”
While Dougherty presents herself as uncoordinated, she must be somewhat skewed in her personal vision, as she is on her school’s Varsity softball and basketball team.
She also enjoys running and watching “The Sound of Music,” which she always enthusiastically sings along to. Perhaps one day she’ll sing along to “The Sound of Music” at a dream dinner with the “so intriguing” Oprah, comedian Mike Birbiglia, and Lauren Conrad? Maybe constantly being presentable will pay off one day if an impromptu date with the dreamy Brody Jenner comes about.
Everyone has a pet peeve. Some people hate loud music and some people hate grapes with seeds. Dougherty dislikes people who eat bananas. Although she holds no grudges against unpeeled bananas, peeled bananas force her to warn her teachers beforehand about her pet peeve because she’ll likely leave the room if she encounters someone eating a banana. Once her peers discovered this intense annoyance, they chased her with peeled bananas throughout the school.
Underneath her love for “The Sound of Music,” Brody Jenner and her disgust towards peeled bananas lies an intelligent girl who cares greatly about her school paper, The Vision. At lunch, Dougherty eats jalapeño Mac and cheese while discussing the future of The Vision with five of her fellow staff members. She appreciates her school for the opportunities they have readily available, but sometimes finds the competition overwhelming.
“There’s so much pressure to be good at sports and school. So much depends on your family name,” explains Dougherty, but she doesn’t allow herself to worry extensively about the future. “I like focus on the present because that’s what’s going to affect my future.”
By Brianne Twiddy, Woodhaven High School