The Real McKoy
Naudia McKoy is the Student of the Month for January. Naudia is a ray of sunshine whose bubbly personality is the reason she was chosen – we all need sunshine in January. Why is she so happy? Well it could be that she was born on May 13th or it could be that she has a great sense of humor and loves laughing at the television show, Modern Family. She might be so happy because she has so many interests, like playing video games, reading, sewing, and creating art. I think her happiness may be a result of the fact that she cares so much about others.
Naudia is trying to spread this joy to the community. Naudia is currently holding a drive for the elderly. There are boxes upstairs and downstairs and she is collecting socks with rubber footies on the bottom, toothpaste, boxed snacks, and handwritten cards for the elderly. Naudia wants to let the elderly know that they are not forgotten by delivering the donated goods to the retirement homes in Kernersville.
Now even though Naudia is friendly and her favorite color is yellow, she has a down to earth personality and she has no problem telling others when their habits might be annoying. Naudia really does not like it when “people chew with their mouth open, squeak their shoes on a polished floor on purpose, people who ‘self-insert’ themselves into a conversation, and people who always change their mind last minute,” she says as she rolls her eyes upward.
Naudia is a true friend according to Junior, Nylah Hayes. She says, “traits that make Naudia a great person would have to be her kind, straightforward personality. Whenever you need advice or help with something, she’ll do her best to help you, without beating around the bush.” She also says that her favorite memories with Naudia include “roaming around school trying to find her friends, or running across the school parking lot to our car.”
Naudia says her greatest role model is her mom. Mrs. McKoy is a teacher who has, “always been there for everything,” says Naudia. Naudia also added that her mom birthed her which is amazing by itself. More than that though, she learned the importance of showing gratitude to others from her mother. Naudia was one of the few students who took the time to write her teachers thank you letters after they wrote her recommendation letters for her applications to college.
When I asked her what she learned about herself during the pandemic, she replied, “I can enjoy being alone at times and other times I need company. I also got to know the people I lived with very well.” She also learned that she may want to be a pathologist since she loves science. If you were wondering, a pathologist studies the causes and effects of disease on the human body and will often diagnose disease or determine how someone died. She also dreams of visiting Italy one day and eating real pasta and pizza. Another dream on her bucket list is to have a large media room in her future house. This room would have a giant couch, the largest couch you can imagine, with a large TV. When asked who she would like to send a shout to in the newspaper, Naudia replied, “Nylah and Parker, Hi!”
Please help Naudia by donating to her drive for the elderly. If you can, please bring in a handwritten note, some footie socks, snacks, and/ or toothpaste. We could really use your donations!
At the end of the last semester, the North Carolina Leadership Academy faced a covid breakout that called for shutting the school down and canceling the 2021 Homecoming games and dance.
Between students and staff, there were a total of 29 known cases.
“We made the decision in consultation with recommendations from the Department of Health,” Principal Renee Faenza said.
Because the Homecoming Festivities were canceled on such short notice, students and parents were quick to make their concerns known.
“People, as always, were upset, frustrated that it happened so late, and frustrated that it happened again,” said Faenza.
Because of this last minute notice, the school allowed some elementary students to come into the school, in case their parents had no opportunity to access childcare. High school students were also allowed to come into school to take tests.
After returning to school in the New Year, the school has set new Covid protocol into place. If a student has come into contact with covid, or has Covid, they can come back to school after five days with a negative rapid test, or after ten days with no test.
Give the Gift of Life
NCLA student, Nick Swisher, is holding a blood drive on Friday, Jan. 21, from 8:30am to 1:30pm in the high school gym. There is currently a blood shortage in the country and the Red Cross is in urgent need of donations. If students want to donate blood and they are already 18 then they can sign up online at redcrossblood.org If you are 16 or 17 then you can still sign up but you have to bring a Parent Permission form which should be up front in the office or online at the red cross website.
Two new things to remember when donating is that you need to wear a mask while donating blood and if you have been vaccinated, please bring your vaccination card because “knowing the name of the manufacturer is critical in determining blood donation eligibility,” according to the Red cross blood website. Also, you need to be 110 pounds.
When asked who is helping him with the blood drive next Friday, he replied, “The NHS (National Honors Society), my mom, Tina Swisher, and my brother, Will Swisher.” They also helped Swisher earlier this year in August when he held a drive at the Firestation 42 in Kernersville. They were successful in getting 25 donors. He is hoping to get as many donors this time at the High School. Swisher also said that there is a red cross app that will show you where your donated blood is helping the community. Swisher’s last blood drive helped patients at Duke Medical.
Swisher said that he was passionate about having a blood drive at school because “it is very helpful to do…and it is good to give back to the community.”
Lindsey Allen, a junior at NCLA, also commented on the importance of donating blood by saying, “You’re saving a person’s life – possibly. It takes 30 minutes and your arm might hurt for an hour but it [could mean the difference between] life and death for another person.”
Will Swisher, a sophomore at NCLA, also said it was an important “Especially now because there’s a shortage of blood in the community and it’s a very good way to give back.”