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Dedicated student balances multiple roles with positivity

Alyssa Debo

Guest Writer

May 22, 2023

DILIGENT STUDENT - Kiernan, wearing merchandise of the college she aspires to attend, reads a book for her English class

Many people deal with the struggle with the difficult task of managing different aspects of their life, between school, sports, and other things and Kiernan Harrington is one of those people.

Harrington is a dedicated student, daughter, sister, employee, runner, and friend. Her schedule is often filled with so many different things she has to manage, yet she still finds a way to stay positive. Classmates and teachers of Harrington all agree that she is a very dedicated student and friend.

“I would say Kiernan is incredibly hard-working and a fun person to sit by,” Anthony Green said. He is a student whose assigned seat is next to Harrington’s in their Honors English class.

Harrington’s hardworking nature can be partially attributed to her parents, her role models. Kevin, her father, has always worked hard to provide for his family, working late nights and weekends. With this example in her life, Harrington took after her father and adopted his dedication to working hard and always doing his best work. Harrington is a very hard worker in all aspects of her life, including her part-time job at the Escape Room USA in Westfield where she usually works around ten hours a week. It has been about two years since Harrington was first hired at the Escape Room USA. She was one of the first people hired at the Westfield location as well as the youngest to work there until just last month. At an awards ceremony, the company held for its employees on April 19, 2023, the manager of the facility, Matthew Hawkins, presented Harrington with an award for one of the company’s core values: kindness.

“She [Harrington] always goes out of her way to make the guests feel welcomed and ensure they have a great experience here, and is always friendly to all of her coworkers in the meantime,” Hawkins said.

As well as having a job, Harrington also participates in sports, as many people her age do. Harrington runs cross country and track, practices for which take up around ten hours of her week, not including personal training she does in her own free time to better prepare for races and such events. Harrington isn’t the fastest on the team, but she is far from the slowest, with her PR (personal record) for 800 yards being 2 minutes 51 seconds, and for a 5K it’s 25 minutes 32 seconds.

“I love being able to push myself to be just milliseconds faster than I was before, and the runner’s high I get is immaculate,” Harrington said when asked about why she enjoys running track and cross country.

Working hard and being successful outside of school is one thing, but Harrington is also successful in school. Her grades are good, even with the pressure of being in some honors classes and having so much to do outside of school. Although she makes it seem easy, that is often a very difficult task.

“It’s difficult to find a healthy balance between everything in life,” Harrington said. “When school started, I struggled for months to keep good grades, keep up with work, and be ready to compete for sports. But, after a while, I found my rhythm and was able to get my grades up and be successful in and out of school.”

She stresses the importance of dropping things when necessary for your own health or success, saying how having too much going on can “drag you down and hold you back.” She herself had to quit the debate team because it became too much for her to keep up with that and everything else in life and she wasn’t able to give it her full attention to put forth her best effort.

“Don’t overthink it. Just do your best,” Harrington said as advice to anyone struggling to manage several things in their lives. “For me, everything stays where I leave it. I go to work, I come home, and don’t think about it. I go run, I come home and don’t think about it. The only exception is school, the homework sorta follows me home. Anyways, it’s really helpful to just leave things where they happen.”

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