Scholar of the Week
Willie-LeeTriania Young of Armstrong High School
by Janeal Downs
With a mother who liked to travel a lot, healing the love for traveling was easily passed down to Willie-LeeTriania Young. “I have done a lot in the time I have been on this earth: travelled to the West Coast and dipped my toes in the frigid November waters, been to the Canadian border, and dabbled with foreign languages,” Willie-LeeTriania stated in an essay. While she enjoys traveling domestically, her passion influences her to want to travel outside of the United States, as well. Her future goals and plans not only include continuing her education after high school, but also visiting other countries.
This fall, Willie-LeeTriania will start school at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. Originally, her top three college choices included UVA, the University of Richmond and Virginia Commonwealth University. Because they accepted and offered her the most money, she chose to attend UVA. Along with these reasons, after first visiting the campus, the campus’ appearance and the school’s Black Student Alliance also attracted her to the university. As of now, she is not sure what she will major in, but during her 2017 summer vacation, she plans to travel to Paris. “It’s just beautiful, I’ve seen pictures of it and it’s just really pretty, so I just want to have that experience,” Willie-LeeTriania said. “I know a little bit of French because I’ve taken it for the last three years so I guess I would see how much I knew.” One lesson she will take with her from high school to college is that “everyone does not have good intentions towards you” and to be cautious with others while at school. She is most looking forward to the college experience, the exposure to this new setting and seeing how what she learns will prepare her for her future career.
While she is still at Armstrong, with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 and an overall GPA of 4.37, Willie-LeeTriania will graduate at the top of her class as the valedictorian. Not only is she the senior class president, but also the president of the Armstrong Leadership Program and the public relations personnel of the Young Adult Police Commission program. With the Young Adult Police Commission program, she and the other members’ mission is to help bridge the gap between the community and law enforcement. They often go to visit underprivileged parts of the city to support their mission. Willie-LeeTriania also gives back to the community as a member of her school’s JROTC. With the JROTC, she and others will usher elderly people at the upcoming Elderly Ball and they will also usher at the Night of Elegance event.
Willie-LeeTriania believes that a man or a woman without a plan is destined to fail; therefore, she hopes to carry out her plans to travel, get her degree and also work toward change. She plans to encourage change by becoming more involved with finding solutions for causes such as racism. “I enjoy helping people, but I prefer to be behind the scenes most of the time as opposed to being on the front side of things,” she said.