Scholar of the Week
Keaja Jefferson of Richmond Community High School
By Janeal Downs
Softball, salve volleyball and going to the gym are Keaja Jefferson’s favorite things to do in her free time. Not only does she love being a part of a sports team, story but staying active is also important for her to accomplish dreams. During the Vietnam War, adiposity Keaja’s grandfather served as an E-4 in the United States Army. Learning about his commitment to the country is one of the main reasons why she plans to serve within the military. “I always liked the idea of just being a part of something for the greater good,” Keaja said. “The military is one of the places to do that.”
Currently a senior at Richmond Community High School, Keaja has a 4.7 GPA. Before going to the military, she plans to continue her education at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Va. She mostly expects to see, and obtain, a lot of discipline at VMI. “It will definitely be a challenge,” Keaja said. “If I can get through it, I can honestly feel pretty good about myself.” She plans on getting her bachelor’s degree in civil engineering because she loves to be hands-on while working. Although her school does not have ROTC, she feels mentally prepared for VMI. While at Community High School, her classes prepared her for the rigor at VMI and she has built her confidence in public speaking. These are things she will take with her to college. After getting her degree, Keaja plans to join the United States Navy. She wants to do work that always keeps her busy, keeps her mind going and challenges her. While she is also interested in other jobs, she sees herself being the commander of a ship.
Keaja has held many leadership positions at her high school. One of her main roles is as the president of her senior class. “From this experience alone, I’ve realized that being a leader of such a great venue is in no way an easy task,” she stated in an essay. She is responsible for taking charge of class meetings, organizing the budget, planning the homecoming and also planning the prom. To Keaja, how well one leads is more important than how often someone is in a leadership role. She is also a member of the National, Mu Alpha Theta, and German Honor societies.
In her own life, a leader and role model is her grandmother, who raises her and her siblings because “she’s always been there.” Her grandmother has taught them discipline, respecting their elders and to always do the best they can. Keaja’s number one goal is to get through college, get into the Navy and make something of herself so her grandmother does not have to worry. She wants to be successful for herself and her family so they won’t ever have to struggle. “All in all, attending VMI and being commissioned into the U.S. Navy, will grant me the satisfaction that I lived through my grandfather’s legacy, and became the best I could be,” Keaja stated in an essay. “I will be able to show myself the physical barriers and limits that I once had, I surpassed, and show my family, community, and country, that I am willing to do whatever it takes to guarantee the safety of all Americans.”