Senior spotlight: Calista Carter


OAHS senior, Calista Carter

Calista Carter is a senior this year at Orcutt Academy, but her case is an interesting one. Carter was originally supposed to graduate with the class of 2020, but she was able to plan out her schedule to allow herself to graduate a year early, and in spite of being one of the youngest members of the class of 2019, Carter has managed to be this year’s Salutatorian.

Carter’s situation is particularly unique, because she started out originally with the class of 2020. She participated in all of their activities and was considered a part of the class until her third year of high school. However, unlike the other members of her class, Carter had to take many Hancock classes starting her freshman year, and she even had to take the SAT and ACT much earlier than her classmates. About her jump from sophomore to senior year, Carter said that it was “quite a transition,” and that she felt “like an outsider” since she had been in classes with the same people for several years.

In order to reach her goal of graduating a year early, Carter had to plan out which classes she would take at Orcutt Academy, and which to take through Allan Hancock College. She had to work very hard to achieve her goal, and she said that, for her, high school “was pretty busy most of the time,” and she “was really busy with Hancock classes and robotics and such.”

Along with graduating early and being a member of the robotics team, Carter was also a member of the tennis team, National Honors Society, California Scholarship Foundation, and a couple other clubs throughout her high school years. Carter has also planned yearly bake sales, blanket makings, and other fundraisers in support of childhood cancer research.

Looking back on the past three years, Carter says that, in the future, she will mostly remember the people she met and the relationships she made during high school, and how they were able to shape and impact her life. Carter said that her experience with graduating early has helped her to create these relationships, saying, “I enjoyed meeting new people in all of my classes and making a bunch of friends that I wouldn’t have made otherwise.”

Carter states: “As I was trying to graduate early, I was really ready to get out of high school; but now that I’m here… I’m basically ready to just stay…” As a final piece of advice, Carter affirms to her classmates, both juniors and departing seniors, to “appreciate the time that you’re here for, because it’s going to feel slow up until the end; and then you’ll feel like it [happened in] a blink of an eye.”

Carter will be attending Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah this coming fall, and will be majoring in Psychology.

We wish you the best of luck in your life Calista. You are destined for great things!