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S: Jeanie Nguyen's Senior Speech

BC: The End. | 2010

FC: Jeanie Nguyen | The High School Years

1: Jeanie Nguyen | May 24, 2010 | AP Literature, Period 5

2: Reflection | As I sit in front of my computer to finish my second to last project of my high school career, I am honestly grumpy and thinking about this enormous busy-work project I must endure and tackle. However, I register for the website (mixbook.com) and pure excitement pounds my heart. The applications and simplicity of the website – all designed by who seemed like a more computer literate version of Jeanie Nguyen. Then, as corny as it may sound, I realize this project carries a purpose.

3: Reflection | After I decided AP tests did not pose as a necessary obstacle for my college education, I took advantage of my 18 year old rights. School transformed into a movie theater with what seemed like reruns of Avatar. Therefore, I filled my time catching up on sleep and reading for fun – a privilege I have not had since Freshman Year. After four strenuous years in high school, I feel that I deserve some time off. One might think that’s what summer’s for, but summers never translated into vacations for meAnd so my senioritis began! But sitting in front of my dusty computer, tackling the visual aspects of this speech imposed the realization that the Mt. Carmel “movie theater” indeed bears importance because memories and moments (such as the senior prank of piling lunch tables on the roof, and the fight between an insane mother and a student which brought forth at least five police cars) vanish quickly; so I better treat these last few moments of high school as if they represent the candy falling out of a piñata that everyone wants.

4: Life Outside Mt. Carmel | Friends | Volunteering | Ashley & Elisa | BLAST, Los Peñasquitos Elementary

5: Life Outside Mt. Carmel | San Diego's Junior Miss | Class of 2010: Rylee Blair, Noelle Calaguri, Elizabeth Salmon, Jeanie Nguyen & Tiffanie Mang

6: Friends | Best Friends (clockwise): Elisa, Ashley, Christina, Emily, Vivian | Jun10r Prom | Sen10r Breakfast: Tie Dye | Shared Birthdays

7: Reflection | Like most students, I love my friends! My friends serve as a reliable escape and a realm of everlasting happiness. I feel as though this statement carries much more weight with regards to my situation. My family definitely does not illustrate a typical family. MTV would not dare to film us! My childhood memories consist of my parents arguing and physically fighting. I laughed at kids who displayed sadness about their parents divorcing because I repeatedly asked Santa for that piece of legal paper that would end the destructive environment I grew up in. Due to my family’s insanity and constant lack of support, I consider them antagonists and now surround myself with positive friends. After elementary, I moved to the Poway Unified School District and enrolled at Black Mountain Middle School. Coming into the formative years of middle school, fear haunted all of my actions. I felt self-conscious about meeting new people. Am I cool enough? Is it weird if I approach them? Today, I am more than happy with the end result of my outgoing personality. The easiness of making new friends truly helped me become comfortable in my skin. However, this in no way means that I did not follow trends, which is the biggest regret of my early teenage years. I wish my confidence about clothing style and eating Asian lunches came much earlier!

8: &Volunteering | Helping the Homeless: | -San Diego Coalition -The Monarch School | San Diego's Outstanding Teen Organization | Utopian League

9: Reflection | I find any time spent with children as a privilege. When I was young, my grandma babysat Tyler, a toddler, and I always helped feed him and ran around the backyard with him. As a freshman, volunteer opportunities began. My best friends (Elisa and Ashley) and I registered to be tutors at the Los Peñasquitos Elementary afterschool BLAST Program. I loved spending Fridays afterschool with my two best friends! We crafted snacks for the children (and ourselves) as well as played our favorite elementary recess games such as tetherball. I continue to love and work at BLAST today because I feel that the program gives me a better childhood. Instead of dwelling about my difficult childhood, I want to dedicate my time to improving others’ childhoods. My joy towards helping children soon narrowed into a passion for helping homeless children. Through my participation in the San Diego’s Outstanding Teen Organization, I volunteered at the “Holiday Magic for Kids” Event, an annual event provided by the San Diego Coalition for the Homeless that attempts to provide homeless children with the opportunity to experience a “normal” Christmas with presents and food. I am also involved with The Monarch School which provides an accredited education as well as basic necessities to the younger homeless community of San Diego. From my involvement with the San Diego Coalition for the Homeless and The Monarch School, I surprisingly learned how “normal” these kids behave; they whine, hoard greedily, and speak rudely! The reason why I continue my involvement is the handful of children who greatly appreciate my help. The simple thanks provides me with a profound sense of fulfillment.

10: San Diego's Junior Miss 2010

11: Reflection | Quavering from pure euphoria, my body sprinkled perspiration like a golden retriever shaking itself dry after a bath. If I had a tail, sonic booms would resonate throughout the entire theater. The America’s Junior Miss Organization awarded me the on-stage question category. Before I returned to the semicircle lineup, a forceful palm propelled me front and center. Frightened, I ducked; meanwhile, a polished, golden medallion settled around my neck. I was dubbed San Diego’s Junior Miss and selected as the representative for the state competition. At that moment, I should be relishing the warmth from the beaming stage lights. I should be radiating pride and impatient to share my success. Instead, I inappropriately suffered from embarrassment. My social network consists of the academically-concerned, where borderline A’s are unspoken of; and the athletically-inclined, who only speak of scoreboards. I projected a condemnation following the announcement of my new title. The Junior Miss Program would be undeservingly stereotyped as a frivolous, superficial pageant where women prance in bikinis, although the organization promotes positive values and empowers young women, all without bikinis.

12: Reflection | I shrank in fear because of the potentially degrading opinions of others. However, self-evaluation determined my suppression in the vortex of conformity. With this realization came a surge of pride because many may never grasp their sense of identity. I have complete confidence in my persona: a balanced and self-motivated female striving to attain lofty, personal goals. The opportunity to represent San Diego County does not cripple this idea of myself. Instead, it promotes my individuality and catalyzes the maturity of my character. A turn upstream, rather than mainstream, came concomitant to this personal enlightenment. When I revealed my Junior Miss journey, my peers were unanimously shocked. They saw me as a scholar. They saw me as an athlete. But by branching out from my typical activities, I genuinely surprised them.

13: California's Junior Miss 2010 | Bakersfield, California August 2010 | 40 Girls, 1 Week, 40 Winners

14: C L U B S | Mt. Carmel - Related Extra Curricular Activities | Key Club, Improvisation Club, Class Council, Utopian League, California Scholarship Federation, National Honor Society, Link Crew

15: Class Council from Freshmen to Senior Year

16: Reflection on clubs | I usually consider myself as an outgoing person, but for some reason, my conservative tendencies overpowered me when I attended improvisation clubs. I never understood why I suddenly changed personalities. In retrospect, I think I only thought I was quiet because everyone else in drama displays very loud personalities. My quiet nature treated my two years as a member of the improvisation team as a weekly ticket to a comedy club.

17: Reflection on swim | During season, you may spot me as the leader of a group who searches for reasons for the cancellation of practice. I feel as though this role is necessary because Coach apparently denies the fact that the combination of dead mice and lightning does not serve as a good reason to get out of the pool. During season, I whine and complain and dread every single practice. I cringe at the thought of practice until 8:30 pm one night and 5:00 am practice the next morning. I feel as though my emotions are justified because Coach apparently denies the fact that homework exists. Yet during the off season, I boast how much I love swimming and even credit my skinny figure to swimming. I miss the polo boys with their buttcracks peeping out of their speedos. I miss the awkward conversations in the girls’ locker room that I cannot even hint at in this reflection. I especially miss the free breadsticks at pasta dinner! And I miss the musical cheer of parents behind my competition lane. Although swim brings tremendous obstacles, I keep coming back for more because I LOVE SWIMMING. I do NOT miss the extreme sleep deprivation and the concomitant emotional rollercoaster, but I do love the lessons I have learned from swim. Swimming provides concrete evidence that hard work alone prompts success. By learning to compensate for my lack of natural athleticism, I have been selected as Varsity Head Captain. The team nominates swimmers who have displayed positive leadership qualities and coaches select from this elite group. Being chosen by both my peers and superiors, I hold the title of team captain closest to my heart as one of my greatest accomplishments. This is a position I have been working towards my entire high school career by attending every practice, even those at 5:00AM! I may not have Michael Phelps’ wingspan, but my coaches witness and verify my commitment through my perfect attendance and desire for improvement.

18: MC Girls DOMINATE Palomar & Valley Leagues | MC Heart | Junior Varsity: Freshman Year Varsity: Sophomore, Junior & Senior Year

19: MC Swim isn't all about swimming; it's about the cheering, the bonding & the family.

20: A setback is a springboard for success -- Gilmore Girls | School Work | Proudest Accomplishment: Skipping Spanish 7-8 | Spanish 7-8 | AP Spanish | with the unwavering support of Profe Cooper, muchas gracias profe

21: Reflection | The most difficult part of this project lies in this section because picking one work I am proud of serves as a daunting task! My personal philosophy on school work details how my name forever remains on what I submit and therefore, should be of my best quality work. Although time does not permit my to execute my philosophy on occasion, I strive to stay true to my philosophy whenever time permits. The task of choosing one work seemed impossible, so I avoided the task! I chose a decision I made in high school as my proudest school work. At the end of sophomore year, after discussing with a few older peers, I decided to skip Spanish 7-8 and cross the accelerated path of jumping into AP Spanish. I indeed felt like a hot shot! I never skipped a class before!

22: Reflection | Walking into the first day of AP Spanish, and every single day of class after that, I was intimidated. I never sat in a class where I had no idea what people spoke of. The majority of the class, already fluent, added to my fear. I dreaded first period and lab days were the worst! My constant fear stemmed from my lack of understanding. I refused to live in fear. I started over-completing every assignment. www.spanishdict.com became my best friend as a translated every single unfamiliar word in our homework. The worst assignment of my high school career consisted of writing a one page, document based essay over the span of four hours on a Sunday afternoon. My over-preparation manifested so much so that I think Profe Cooper thought I cheated! AP Spanish took a large toll on me, especially during swim season. I became so exhausted that I stopped caring about the little details. Fatigue transformed into the new cure for perfectionism! This class helped me realize that a broader understanding is more important than an understanding of minor, disconnected details. This lesson definitely helped me my junior year in AP Chemistry!

23: ¡España!

24: MC Swim Team | T r i b u t e | 2006-2010

25: Reflection | Swim imposed the virtue of patience onto me because it is the sport of delayed gratification. We train for three months with weak competition in the Valley League in hopes of dominating CIFs. Yet when CIFs results in a loss, we must persevere and train harder the next season. Spring is the time of the year that I am constantly sore for four months, but I love swim because the sport gives me the support and the sense of family I hardly get at home.

28: Reflection | My older sister Annie poses as not only the reason why I live, but also as my motivation to strive to be the best version of myself. She pushes me to the breaking point, and keeps pushing. She constantly expects more out of me then I am ever able to give her. I call her nasty and inappropriate names in my head. But at the end of the day I know that she strains our relationship to ensure that I receive everything I deserve. By the end of every school year, I become diagnosed with a severe case of homesickness! Take this literally: I get seriously sick of living at home under ridiculous restraints. Therefore, summer camps have been my savior. These 4-6 week programs at a university has not only furthered my interest in mathematics and science, but have also imposed the virtue of independence onto me. Due to my summer camp experience, I feel that I have an advantage going into my first year of college because I already experienced living away from home for an extended period of time.

29: Summer Camps: UCI & UCD | Older Sister: Annie

30: Future Goals... | ...so close I can see AND taste them! ... | -High School & College Graduation -Career & Family

31: Reflection | In my first year of college, I plan on maintaining great grades, volunteering at the local hospital, finding a part time job near campus, exercising at least 3-4 times a week, and exploring the east coast! My first and only time in the East was this past April for Harvard’s Visiting Program, which I absolutely enjoyed! The weekend serves only as a peephole into the masses of opportunities Harvard has and I find my excitement uncontainable! My good friend, Aditi Pai, attends Boston University and we are both extremely happy that our fates led us to the Boston area! I am grateful for her because her willingness to help me in regards to coats, parties, and boys, goes above and beyond! However, I really do not plan on partying wildly in college. I hope my Christian faith becomes more active than these high school years.

32: Reflection | In four years, I yearn to hold a Harvard diploma and hope to be in a serious relationship. As of yet, I am completely undecided about my career, but I am certain (not completely certain) that my passion in chemistry is worth pursuing. Whether graduate school (I really hope not) lies in my future, or finding a job right out of college becomes my future, I must wait and see! Although I identify with the Asian ethnicity, I must admit I am somewhat white-washed. I dream of the white picket fence and of me as a stay at home mother with no work to do except driving the kids to ballet/football! Right now, at age 18, that seems like the good life!! Therefore, in 10 years, I want to take on the role of a mother and maintain the possibility of a part time job, such as a high school chemistry teacher. Ms. Hepler sparked my passion for chemistry and I can only hope to give back as much as she continues to do. With regards to my friends, I do hope to keep in touch with my best friends from high school such as Emily McKeon and Vivian Phan. I hope this is not too idealistic. I also will mostly likely remain good friends with my peers from college.

33: ...but yet so far away! | Graduate college & MAYBE Graduate School | Maintain High School Best Friends! | Travel via Harvard Traveling Fellowship | Family | Future career = ??? / Chemistry

34: Self Evaluation | Jeanie Nguyen Ms. T AP Literature: Period 5 May 24, 2010 Jeanie Nguyen, as of now I never see myself as an artistic, creative person, and my scientifically focused characteristics seem to support this view. However, I recently feel as if I do not give myself enough credit. I still cannot draw anything but a palm tree, but I love the end result of all my artsy projects such as scrapbooking. People also tell me, and awards confirm, that my speech is articulate. Therefore, I conclude that I communicate my ideas, through aesthetics and/or speech, very well. I accredit these skills to the Mt. Carmel teaching staff as well as the Junior Miss Program for forcing me to speak in front of an audience. I hold the most value to the pages about swim because my swimming career has consisted of swimming (and complaining), but never reflecting. My senior season has officially ended with a CIF victory on the boys’ side and a devastating, unexpected loss on the girls’ side. However, the only sadness I feel stems from the fact that I will never represent Mt. Carmel High School in a swimming competition. Although me entire competitive swimming career took place within my high school years, I will continue to recognize and identify myself as a swimmer.

35: The knowledge and life skills that I take away from both the wise Mt. Carmel staff and the pool deck will resonate with me forever. I use to think of high school as just a holding place for teenagers to age and mature for the real world, but now I think of high school as a place to grow as a person. I am honored that I can reminisce on my high school years without any regrets because I know I lived 2006-2010 to the fullest and took advantage of all the opportunities Mt. Carmel offers. Due to the fun and warm memories I take away from Mt. Carmel High School, I would do it all over again, exactly how I did it the first time. | Self Evaluation

36: End of Ms. T's Version

37: Beginning of Speech Version

38: Jeanie Nguyen | The High School Years

39: Jeanie Nguyen | May 24, 2010 | AP Literature, Period 5

40: Life Outside Mt. Carmel | Friends | Volunteering

41: Life Outside Mt. Carmel | Junior Miss

42: Friends

43: &Volunteering | Helping the Homeless: | -San Diego Coalition -The Monarch School

44: San Diego's Junior Miss 2010

45: California's Junior Miss 2010 | Bakersfield, California August 2010

46: C L U B S | Mt. Carmel - Related Extra Curricular Activities

47: Class Council

48: MC Girls DOMINATE Palomar & Valley Leagues | MC Heart

50: A setback is a springboard for success -- Gilmore Girls | School Work | Proudest Accomplishment: Skipping Spanish 7-8

51: ¡España!

52: MC Swim Team | T r i b u t e | 2006-2010 | Swimming

53: Summer Camps: UCI & UCD | Older Sister: Annie

54: Future Goals... | ...so close I can see AND taste them! ... | -High School & College Graduation -Career & Family

55: ...but yet so far away!

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