Nikki Jacobus has worked hard these past four years and she has a wonderful record to show for it. The Huntington High School senior will graduate near the top of the Class of 2018 and then head off to the University of Arizona’s Honors College where she plans to study physiology.
Arizona is a long way from Huntington, but it’s very familiar territory to the teenager. “My family and I have been traveling to Arizona for vacation for years and have fallen in love with the location,” Ms. Jacobus said. “I love that the school has so much to offer in so many different aspects. With strong academics, more than 600 clubs offered, lively school spirit, a vibrant community and a wide variety of resources available, the opportunities are endless. Being part of the honors college will provide even more opportunities and close connections with those around me.”
Huntington High School senior Nikki Jacobus
Located in Tucson, the University of Arizona’s campus covers 380 acres and is home to about 45,000 students. The school’s honors college enrolls about 4,500 undergraduates and provides a “smaller community feel, like that of a liberal arts college within a large research institution,” according to an online overview.
“I love that although the campus is big, it still has a close-knit community,” Ms. Jacobus said. “I have visited the campus four times and it has been apparent that it is the right fit for me. I have met students and advisors from clubs that I want to join and they have all been extremely welcoming. I am thrilled to meet people in college who share the same aspirations as I have. I am beyond excited to call this school my new home.”
Ms. Jacobus considered Arizona State University, Stony Brook University, Binghamton University, SUNY Geneseo, and the University of Delaware before choosing the University of Arizona.
Plans a career in medicine
“I will be majoring in pre-physiology in the hopes of pursuing a career in the medical field,” Ms. Jacobus said. “I am considering becoming an optometrist, dentist or a pediatrician, but I am not certain yet. I have a love for helping people regardless of the circumstance and becoming a doctor would provide opportunities to continue to do so. I also love working with children, so incorporating that aspect into my career would be wonderful.”
Some of the classes on the senior’s current year academic schedule include Advanced Placement Biology, Science Research Honors, Italian Honors, Bible Literature and Humanities, Calculus and Participation in Government.
“I love every teacher and advisor who I have encountered throughout my time at Huntington High School,” Ms. Jacobus said. “Mr. [Robert] Gilmor, who I refer to as Gil is one out of the many who have impacted me significantly. Ever since I met Gil through Natural Helpers as a freshman, I can say without a doubt that I have been blessed. His love and compassion for people is undeniable. He is always willing to lend an ear and be there for everyone. Mrs. [Kelly] Krycinski has also had a tremendous impact on me. I have learned so much from her since having her as my teacher for English 9 Honors and now again for Bible Literature and Humanities. From her humor and kindness to her thoughtfulness, I am so thankful to have had her as a teacher and Key Club faculty advisor.”
In addition to Natural Helpers and Key Club, Ms. Jacobus has been a member of the Grandfriends club and the Italian and English Honor Societies. She is the captain for her Relay For Life team.
“One highlight of my time at Huntington High School is the Key Club’s Sears and Target shopping tours,” Ms. Jacobus said. “This is an event in which the Key Club members shop with and for a child who is in need of winter clothing. My greatest memory of this event was in ninth grade when a young girl who my friend and I shopped for told Santa Claus that she did not want any gifts for herself, but only for her family. Witnessing her gratitude and selflessness was truly eye-opening and heart-warming. Being part of Natural Helpers has also been a crucial part of my time at Huntington. Natural Helpers has provided me with a close family of people who share a love for helping others. I am so thankful to have them and that we are here for each other and others. The Natural Helpers’ retreats have helped me to grow in empathy and listening skills. I have also loved spending time with the Life Skills students at Huntington through Natural Helpers. They have taught me so much and I am grateful for the smile that they bring to my face every time I see them. Lastly, singing Christmas carols at a nursing home with Grandfriends has been amazing. It’s been incredible to see the joy and appreciation of the elderly there.”
Experience has been “unforgettable and special”
While Ms. Jacobus can’t wait to start her college experience in Arizona, it’s clear there will always be a place reserved in heart just for Huntington.
“My experience at Huntington High School has been unforgettable and special,” Ms. Jacobus said. “I would not trade the memories made, the lessons I learned and the people I met for the world. The teachers and advisors are committed to going the extra mile for every student. My peers are friendly, welcoming and kind beyond imagination. There are so many events that bring people together here and the school spirit is present. Huntington has helped me to grow and has prepared me for the next adventure. Huntington will always have a place in my heart. The opportunities at Huntington are outstanding and I will miss every second of it.”