Faces of Central

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Pat Maher

Best known as the woman at the front desk in the social services office, Pat Maher, has served 25 years in this district. As the first person who is seen in the social services office, Maher has an important job; she helps students who need someone to talk to, she registers incoming freshman, and sign students in and out of the office.

“The team I work with and the dedication they have for the success for their students is definitely the best part of my job,” Maher said.

After school hours, Maher enjoys spending time with her family, including her 32 years and 35 years old sons. Working out and being active are important pieces to Maher’s life.

“I absolutely love to shop,” said Maher, “if anything is ever on sale buy it. You always need something when you can’t get it so never pass on a sale.”

Maher also loves the outdoors; she has traveled to Colorado to hike and go white-water rafting. The adventuring aspect is something very important to Maher.

“[White water rafting] is not that hard. If you’re a beginner, they put you on an easier course. It’s a lot of fun,” Maher said.

Although Maher feels she puts on a stone persona at school, after hours she says she shows her emotions and “wears [her] heart on [her] sleeve.”

 

Molly Enix

She can draw! She can dance! She can sing! All of these talents are just a few of freshman Molly Enix’s favorite hobbies. Her past helped shape her current self.

“I lived in Louisiana from when I was born until I was five. Then I went to Sweden for a few years, left there when I was twelve, and now I’m here,” Enix said. “I was adopted in Louisiana somewhere… I was about 2 when I was adopted. All of my other siblings are adopted except one.”

After taking a DNA test, the Enix family found out that Molly was Swedish, so they packed up and moved to Sweden because they thought it would be best.

“The way people dress is different from how we used to dress on Louisiana,” Enix said. “In Sweden, they covered a lot of their body.”

After spending seven years in Sweden, the Enix’s moved here.

“[We moved to Plainfield] because my grandma’s house burnt down during the night, so we moved here and now she lives with us because it’s a better environment so she doesn’t get hurt again,” Enix said.

Molly enjoys to draw, and use art to help deal with emotions and escape from any chaos at home.

“One of the drawings I’ve done, about two to three years ago, a picture of a wolf, and it looks so well done, that I think I didn’t do it,” Enix said. “I was angry at the time, so I guess that’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.”

 

Daniel Alexander

“I race motocross, and I play golf. My family moved to Illinois from Arizona, and then I got into motocross five to six years ago. Basically, you ride motorcycles on the course, and you compete. [The competitions] are all basically the same, but this year I’m moving up to a bigger class, which is faster people.

My dad was into motocross, and my brother raced. He broke both of his legs, his femur, and stopped racing.I’ve broken five or six bones, but you just get right back up. It’s really just wherever life takes me. If I get bored of it, I get bored of it, and if I don’t, I’ll keep going. My dad wants me to play golf, but I want to do motocross, but it’s just so expensive.

I’m a very positive person, I don’t have negative vibes, I like to keep myself positive and keep going, I just like to live the best life I can. I love trying new things, just exploring the world, it’s just fun.”

– Daniel Alexander, sophomore

 

Shelby Allen

Shelby Allen, junior. Spends her time at school, home, or her new job at Sky Zone.

“I think I’ve always been close to family because my mom values it so much,” Allen said. “One of my favorite memories is a trip me and my family took to Mexico. My whole family was there, including all my mom’s sisters. We go to the movies close to every Friday, and we use to watch tv together like The Goldberg’s.”

“Having the ability to have people in my life is one of the best things,” Allen said.

Allen’s brother’s girlfriend has also become a big part of her life Allen said.

“She helps me a lot; she’s not awkward or anything. She’s like family,” Allen said.

Her brother’s girlfriend is currently in college for nursing, which Allen looks up to.

“My plans for after high school would be going to college and doing something medical like nursing, physical therapy, or an ultrasound tech,” Allen said.

 

Alejandro Guzman

“In middle school, I received the alpha wolf award for the 8th grade class and I had no idea that I was even a contender for that award. It really surprised me that I stood out to teachers that much that they would nominate me for something like that. It taught me to keep striving for greatness and that even when you think no one is watching, someone probably is. I’m proud of getting into the top five percent of my senior class. I worked really hard in my last four years of high school so that I can be where I am right now. [The hardest class I’ve ever taken] was definitely AP U.S. History. That was the first class that I actually realized I needed to start studying.

My dad shaped me into the person I am and pushed me to be great in everything that I do. He taught me how to be a good person.”

– Alejandro Guzman, senior

 

Ryan Wolcott

“I am a special education teacher, and I co-teach sophomore English. A lot of the kids I work with struggle with school, which is fun for me to help those kids out. This is my ninth year [teaching]. I taught at the junior high level in Joliet for four years, and this is my fifth year here at Central. [I attended college at] the University of St. Francis, I did a graduate and earned an undergraduate degree there. [In my free time], I like to exercise and work out, and I like to read. I like [visiting] Washington D.C. I used to be a U.S. history teacher, and there’s a lot of history in D.C. so I’ve been there a couple times, and I always like going there. I promised my step daughter that when she turned twelve, which will be in November, that she could have a turtle. I promised her this like five years ago and I thought she’d forget one day, and she hasn’t so [that] will probably be a new addition to the house later this year.”

– Ryan Wolcott, special education teacher

 

Kristine Co

“I teach family consumer science, so mostly the advanced child development with the preschool lab [as well as] the culinary classes. I love the mix of juniors, seniors, sophomores, and freshmen I get in all my classes [and] it’s not just one grade level. I’ve been teaching for 14 years. I started with student teaching, and I landed a permanent job as [another] teacher was retiring. [In my free time], I hang out with my daughter and fiancé and my siblings. I am the youngest of six siblings, and I have three step brothers and a biological brother and sister. I love Italian food, but I’m not a picky eater. I love Asian food, I love Italian food, I love American food, but mostly Italian is what I stick with. I am a hopeless romantic, so I do have a lot of favorite movies, [so] romantic action movies, rom-coms, [and] a lot of Netflix. [I also like] Game of Thrones.”

– Kristine Co,

culinary arts teacher

 

John Kost

Lake Michigan. 2010. Suddenly, the wind blew stronger and stronger. The sky got darker and grayer. The waves grew larger. The current grew stronger. Nearly everyone was out of the water; except one 6-year-old boy. In his floaties, he struggled to swim towards the shore.

Luckily, that six-year-old boy is safe and is now 15. For freshman John Kost, that describes the scariest moment in his life.

John has been taking guitar lessons, and likes music from the British rock band, the Dire Straits.

“They just have good songs,” Kost said. “Single Handed Sailor is my favorite song [to play on guitar].”

John has played guitar for almost a year now, and started when he decided to pick up a guitar from his sister.

“I just play for fun,” Kost said. “I’d maybe pursue guitar in the future.”

If John decided not to be a musician, he thinks of possibly becoming a doctor. Aside from guitar, John enjoys riding his bike. He used to enjoy being on the chess team in third grade, but now he enjoys school.

“[My favorite subjects are] A.P. Human Geography, and Spanish II,” Kost said. “I like high school better than middle school because it’s a lot more relaxed.

 

Anna Layne

“I’m Italian, so I kind of feel like that’s where my confidence comes from. My family is very outgoing; we like to talk a lot, so I’m very friendly with people, and I’ve never really been a shy person.
I really like hanging out with my friends, it’s kind of been a big motivation, just spending time with friends and surrounding myself with positive people, because when you surround yourself with positive people, you can live a positive life.

I live by the saying, ‘Everything happens for a reason.’ So if anything challenging is ever thrown at me, I always try to find the positives about it, and I know that something good comes out of everything, and it’s just a bad day, not a bad life; there’s always something to look forward to.
When I graduate, I want to become a teather, that’s just something I’ve always wanted to do since I was little. College-wise, I want to go Illinois State, that’s just the path I’m trying to go towards, but who knows what life is going to throw at me.”

– Anna Layne, sophomore

 

Dillon Koty

Dillon Koty junior, spends most of his afterschool time with sports and school work. Koty works to maintain his grades, social life, and his athletic career as he is ready to accomplish anything, he sets his mind to.

“I’m pretty outgoing, I work hard for the things I want and don’t take no for an answer,” Koty said.

Koty aspires to one day play football professionally, he sets his sights to play northwestern; however, admits he it may not be a realistic goal. Even if he won’t be able to play for his dream-team he still aspires to play football as it has been part of his life for many years.

“I joined in sixth grade and I’ve been in it since, it’s just a constant in my life,” Koty said.

While he plans to play football after high school, he also wants to peruse a degree in finances while in a four-year college.

“It’s just really interesting how the economy works” Koty, said.

While Koty still looks to football for a lot of his life, he also spends a lot of time with his family, and his girlfriend, Natalie Bearbower, junior at Plainfield north, is also an athlete.

“One of the best things that happened was meeting my girlfriend, she’s pretty great” Koty said.

 

Amber Gockman

There’s no actual event that has shaped me, I take the bad and negative and turn it into something positive. When I was a sophomore I played volleyball. When I was a freshman I played on the  volleyball team. I dislocated my kneecap but I still played high school and travel teams. My sophomore  year I had knee surgery. If it weren’t for my friends and family to help me I would have failed my first semester of sophomore year. My friends always helped me, and I never gave up. Right now, I’m going to JJC for two years and planning to study Special Ed; I want to be a teacher. My youngest brother has autism and when I met all his friends, I loved the way their creative minds flowed and how they see the world differently than we do. I find them very inspiring, and I personally think they are so unique in their own way.

My other brother Kyle never gives up on his dreams I believe that he is going to do great in life by doing what he loves now. He’ll be very successful in the future. So will my youngest brother Troy, it just gives me hope for them.

 

Alan Bank

Social worker, Alan Bank, focuses on making the school a more positive and safer place to be.

“High school can be a very positive experience when students get involved with dances and after school activities. I wish I would have done more of that,” Bank said.

“I have never wanted to change careers- not since being a social worker,” Bank said.

Although several of his students come in with the same problems, he says every person cope differently and has a completely different life than someone who might have the same struggles. After school hours, he not only attends his three children’s events, he also likes to stay active.

“I like to play different sports like basketball and golf,” Bank said.

Plainfield does not compare to Puerta Verde, Mexico, according to Bank, because the marketplaces do not compare to the commercialized areas and resorts. Outside of visiting Mexico for a family vacation, Bank describes his life as “pretty vanilla.”

“Like everyone else, I am just waiting for the next season of Game of Thrones,” Bank said.

 

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