12 Utah County Teens Who Will Change the World

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Matt Bennett, utahvalley360.com

To categorize any of these impressive Utah County teen-agers as simply an “athlete” or “artist” or “musician” would be to understate who they are.

No, there’s more to these 12 than meets the eye. Past the accomplishments and SAT scores, it’s about their ambition, energy and focus.

These are teen-agers who, according to their high school principals, will “change the world.” These are the type of youth you hope your own son or daughter will marry one day. They are renaissance students who excel in more than one area and whose excitement for life and living are contagious.

Like George Bailey, in Frank Capra’s classic movie, “It’s A Wonderful Life,” the world will be a more rich, interesting place to live because of these 12 lives. They may create works of art that make the mind wonder, find a cure for the common cold or even help to maintain the laws that make this country free.

Take time to get to know them.

Cassia Kofoed

Cassia Kofoed

Sage Mindset, Cassia Kofoed
Age: 17
American Fork High School
While it is true that Cassia is second to none in intelligence, it’s her focus and passion that might make her important to you one day.
Cassia plans on studying microbiology and psychology and one day becoming a genetic counselor, a career you may not know much about now, but which may be very important to you one day.
Her heroes in life are her parents, and especially her mother, who is currently battling a disease that has her wheelchair bound. Cassia said she takes courage in her mother’s optimistic views on life, despite her hardship.

Accomplishments

  • 3.99 GPA
  • Sterling Scholar finalist for science
  • National Merit finalist
  • UVSC’s Crystal Eagle Award
  • National Honors Society secretary
  • Concert Choir
  • Accomplished pianist
  • A.P. classes

Family

  • Six children; Cassia is the oldest

Goals for the future

  • BYU majoring in microbiology and psychology; career as a genetic counselor
Brock Sisson

Brock Sisson

Performing Art
Brock Sisson
Age:18
Lehi High School
Brock was a unique pick for inclusion in this story because he bucks the trend of most of the other students selected. Brock didn’t score unusually high on standardized tests and didn’t set a Lehi High School record for touchdowns. Instead, Brock was picked because of his creativity and imagination.
Aside from being an accomplished artist, Brock is helping assemble dinosaur skeletons for the North American Museum of Ancient Life. He may very well turn out to be the Indiana Jones of Utah Valley.
Of the many people who have helped shape Brock’s life, he looks up to a junior high science teacher, Greg Bucklew.

Accomplishments

  •  artist
  • pencil sketches
  •  clay sculpturing
  • oil painting
  •  water colors
  • employed at Western Paleontology at Thanksgiving Point

Family

  • Five children; Brock is second to the youngest

Goals for the future

  • Either College of Eastern Utah or University of Utah majoring in archeology or paleontology, LDS mission, become a paleontologist
Brian Ricks

Brian Ricks

Competent Computation
Brian Ricks
Age:18
Lone Peak High School
Brian received a perfect score on the math section of his SAT. And while his verbal score wasn’t too bad either (740) he can prove his language skills are exceptional by the fact he fluently speaks up to eight languages — when you include computer languages. Brian wins the “most likely to become the next Bill Gates” award. Let’s just say you’re most likely to find Brian in front of a computer monitor. Other hobbies include reading and contact juggling.
Brian looks up to his dad and “many of the staff members” at Lone Peak High School.

Accomplishments

  •  Sterling Scholar finalist in computer technology
  • BYU Hinckley Scholarship Finalist
  • Created Lone Peak High’s Web site
  • Key Club
  • National Honors Society
  • Knows eight computer languages
  •  1540 SAT score
  • 4.0 GPA

Family

  • Five children; third in family

Goals for the future

  • BYU, work in computer industry

 

Alice Bauman

Alice Bauman

Instrumental Impart
Alice Bauman
Age: 18
Mountain View High School
This publication simply can’t afford the space to list all of Alice’s accomplishments. Simply put, Alice is a very compassionate person who excels in most everything she tries. She concerns herself with politics and community service and still finds the time to become an expert musician and shine in the classroom.
Alice says Jesus Christ is her perfect example and helps her get through life.

Accomplishments

  • Academic Decathlon president
  • plays flute, piccolo
  • toured Europe with the American Musical Ambassadors
  • Utah Young Ambassadors
  • All-State Band 1999
  • All-State Orchestra 2000
  • symphonic band and orchestra
  • seminary council
  • Health Occupations Students of America
  • Key Club
  • Spirit Club
  • medical intern at Utah Valley Hospital
  • 3.997 GPA (30 ACT score)
  • AP classes
  • Sterling Scholar runner-up in foreign language (Spanish) and music

Family

  • Alice is the oldest of four children

Goals for the future

  • BYU, career as pediatric nurse, continue playing flute, family

 

Stephen Ashton

Stephen Ashton

Good Heart
Stephen Ashton
Age:17
Orem High School
Stephen, according to Orem High administrators, possesses that certain something that generates happiness whenever people are around him. Aside from his many accomplishments, Stephen is funny, happy and generally concerned for others.
He says his role models in life have been his family, including both of his parents and his 10 siblings.

Accomplishments

  • Seminary council member
  • National Honors Society Secretary
  • Eagle Scout
  • 3.9 GPA
  • 27 ACT score
  • Tennis Team
  • Sterling Scholar runner-up in computer technology
  • Key Club
  • Ultimate frisbee club, chess

Family

  • Stephen is the 10th of 11 children

Goals for the future

  • BYU, LDS mission

 

Jennifer Swenson

Jennifer Swenson

Aspiring All
Jennifer Swenson
Age: 18
Payson High School
“Jennifer owns her own business, and is a nice girl to boot! She is a true leader, humble enough to befriend everyone, yet has had opportunities to serve in various prom/sweetheart royalties. She is remarkable — really!” says Payson High principal Kay Smith.
Jennifer credits her parents for “always supporting me in my activities and helping me to get involved and accomplish my goals.”

Accomplishments

  • student body secretary
  • concert pianist
  • Future Farmers of America vice president
  • school choir
  • soccer team member
  • owns own business
  • Sterling Scholar finalist in trade and technical education

Family

  • Four girls; Jennifer is the second oldest.

Goals for the future

  • Utah State majoring in businesses

 

Cole D. Hooley

Cole D. Hooley

Vocal Fervor
Cole D. Hooley
Age: 18
Pleasant Grove High School
Of all the students in this article, Cole’s enthusiasm for life is most apparent. He’s anything but passive, and has a heart big enough to embrace many different groups at Pleasant Grove High and the community. Cole has an honest love for others and is genuinely interested in helping others.
His role models are his parents, extended family, President Gordon B. Hinckley and “ultimately Jesus Christ.”
Accomplishments

  • Debate team, 1st place in state oratory competition
  • Lincoln/Douglas debate regional champion
  • member Utah Theater Association, No. 1 auditioner
  • Sterling Scholar finalist speech / drama
  • youngest drama teacher at Showtime Performing Arts Company
  • Special Olympics volunteer
  • student council member
  • ballroom team
  • acts as lawyer in Pleasant Grove’s city youth court program
  • Key Club
  • Friends of the Environment Club

Family

  • Cole is the oldest of four children

Goals for the future

  • UVSC or BYU, LDS mission, psychology degree, become licensed psychologist, travel the world helping teens

 

Chase Carlile

Chase Carlile

Public Planner
Chase Carlile
Age: 18
Provo High School
Many of today’s high school students are unsure about life and what it will bring. Not Chase.
“My ultimate goal is to become United States president, White House chief of staff or Secretary of State,” Chase says. In the meantime he wants to work in the U.S. foreign service and work for the U.S. State Department abroad, “in Europe or South America,” he says. And after you talk with him for only a minute, you believe he will accomplish these goals.
Chase says Ted Dowling, executive director at the Provo City Council, has been a role model for him. It should also come as no surprise that Chase received the “Most Likely to become President” award at Provo High.
Accomplishments

  • Provo City Youth Mayor
  • Intern for the Provo City Council
  • high honor role

Family

  • Chase is the middle of three children.

Goals for the future

  • Georgetown University or University of Utah majoring in political science, French and Spanish. LDS mission.

 

Jonathan Frandsen

Jonathan Frandsen

Play On
Jonathan Frandsen
Age: 17
Spanish Fork High School
Jonathan was the only junior selected for inclusion in this article, so one can only imagine what his senior year will bring. Those who know Jonathan describe him as intense. They say that intensity is what makes him a successful athlete, and he takes that same intensity with him when he plays the violin. Jonathan studies violin under the tutelage of Jack Ashton, member of the Utah Symphony.
Jonathan looks up to his two older brothers, who have been role models for him.
Accomplishments

  • lettered in varsity football and soccer
  • 4.0 GPA
  • AP and honors classes
  • Young Chamber Players
  • Utah Valley Children’s Choir
  • Eagle Scout with five palms
  • received two superiors at state in violin
  • sophomore student council
  • 4-H member
  • plays in a blue grass band

Family

  • Six children, Jonathan is third oldest.

Goals for the future

  • BYU majoring in music; medical school.

 

Marc Killpack

Marc Killpack

Well Founded
Marc Killpack
Age: 18
Springville High School
Marc is a good example of what can be accomplished with focus and good examples in life. In addition to having a seemingly perfect balance between academics and athletics, Marc is known for being genuine and a leader at Springville High School.
He says more than anything else his family and older brothers have been his examples of good living.  “Just about everything I work towards are things my older brothers have already accomplished,” he says.
Accomplishments

  • Triple A soccer player
  • high school soccer team captain
  • Sterling Scholar finalist in trade and technical education
  • 3.98 GPA
  • Four AP classes (physics, calculus, biology and English)
  • National Honors Society
  • Key Club
  • Seminary Council president

Family

  • Marc is the youngest of five children.

Goals for the future

  • BYU majoring in engineering, LDS mission.

 

Derek Peterson

Derek Peterson

Prominence and Din
Derek Peterson
Age:18
Timpanogos High School
At 6-foot-2 and 260 pounds, Derek is a force to be reckoned with in athletics at Timpanogos High. He may soon be a force to be reckoned with in the American pop music scene. While most students would jump at college scholarships (of which Derek has received several) Derek will opt for the road less traveled and tour the U.S. with his rock and roll band “Kyros GP6.”
But Derek’s uniqueness doesn’t stop there. Derek, who is a Born Again Christian, has “earned the respect of his fellow students, faculty and staff at Timpanogos High School for being a model of morality and integrity,” states Principal Brad Kendall in a letter to Utah Valley Magazine.
Derek’s most recent brush with greatness came when Olympic gold medalist Rulon Gardner asked him to work out with him. “I got worked,” Derek says.
Accomplishments

  • student body president
  • 3.7 GPA
  • state champion wrestler
  • football team captain and wrestling team captain
  • drummer in local band: “Kyros GP6”

Family

  • Derek is the middle of three children

Goals for the future

  • Tour United States with “Kyros GP6,” become rock and roll star. Backup plan: college wrestling, family.

 

Daniel Koontz

Daniel Koontz

Pro Equity
Daniel Koontz
Age: 18
Timpview High School
“At Timpview High School, Dan is a phenomenon: a person who belongs in a class by himself intellectually but who chooses to contribute his gifts to school and community. With a heart as big as his grin, Dan shows us what passionate learning is.” writes Louise G. Durham, Daniel’s Advanced Placement English teacher.
Daniel says his role models include his father because “he’s successful in terms of career, but also with his family.” Another role model is Supreme Court Justice Earl Ward, who served on the U.S. Supreme Court from 1953-1968.
Daniel is intensely interested in law, especially as it relates to education, and also as it relates to segregation.
Accomplishments

  • 3.99 GPA
  • Seven AP classes
  • Timpview outstanding junior student
  • orchestra and symphonic band
  • principal clarinetist for the Utah  Valley Youth Philharmonic Orchestra
  • featured soloist in school’s Orchestra Concerto Concert
  • tutors other students
  • intern with Senator Orrin Hatch

Family

  • Daniel is the oldest of two children

Goals for the future

  • BYU majoring in English, law degree. community orchestra

 

THE QUARRY would like to invite the “12 Utah County teens who will change the world” in for a complimentary climb.
2494 N. University Parkway, Provo

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