Catherine Hill is an opportunist.
As The Charlotte Post Foundation's Top Senior runner-up, the Hopewell High School senior has made the most of what life has offered her.
"I've always been an opportunist," Hill said. "I've always seen every opportunity that has come to me as a chance for success, or as opportunity to learn something and process in my personal life. I'm someone who is always constantly improving. I believe firmly in constant improvement."
By heading to North Carolina State University in the fall, Hill intends to pursue a path in chemical engineering. "I plan to major in chemical engineering, but I've been accepted to the school as an exploratory studies student," she said.
"I plan to transfer into chemical engineering later on in the year." From family to friends, Hill surrounds herself with people who lift her up. "I have a very supportive family," Hill said. "They usually help me whenever I get off track. I surround myself with friends who have the same mindset of continuously improving ourselves. If nothing else, I join programs where they strive to improve, which also attributed to my self-motivation."
By placing herself in positive environments that challenge her, Hill continues to rise. "After college I plan to go to into research and development, hopefully in the government sector, and also travel a little bit more," Hill said. Not only does she seek to inspire others, but Hill has aspirations to become better acquainted with the world by actually seeing it rather than merely reading about it in a textbook.
"I've mostly stayed on the East Coast," Hill said. "This past week, we went to the drill nationals. We went to nationals as the only Charlotte-Mecklenburg school." Hill, who intends to study abroad while at N.C. State, has her eyes set on becoming trilingual. "I would like to learn two languages, eventually," Hill said. "In middle school, I started to learn Spanish. Right now, I'm really focused on French. I'm more comfortable with French. I would like to continue to learn French in college, and then possibly explore Chinese or Japanese later on." Hill's interest in government work extends from her participation in Hopewell's JROTC program.
"They kind of opened my eyes to government work, and the demand that we have for employees with a certain skill set," she said. Outside of academic pursuits, Hill enjoys reading, singing with Our Lady of Consolation Catholic Church and dancing. "I used to take taekwondo and I hope to get back into that in college, or boxing, and start playing the piano in college as well," Hill said. Hill attributes her work ethic to her mother Eva Hill, a teacher at Long Creek Elementary School.
"She is very gifted at what she does and she puts everything she has into what she does," Hill said. "That has helped me with being a bit of a workaholic and just working hard in general."