A Project for Better Journalism chapter

Feature: Kristen Harold

Kristen Harold is a senior in the class of 2018 with a 3.8 average GPA. When she´s not doing any sports or working, she tries to get in as much studying as possible because it´s hard to fit it into her busy schedule. She is easily one of the strongest on Northview´s Varsity Competion cheer team. She´s a beautiful Italian brunette holding more than just dreams in her hands. Harold used to do gymnastics, but after she quit, she decided to do cheer. She thought it would be a good fit for her because she would still be able to get a good work out while working on her tumbling skills. Cheering had never been in Harold´s plans at all. In fact, she even admits to making fun of cheerleaders at one point, but as she started to cheer she began to love it. If someone looked at Harold and how she adjusted to the team last year, that person would have never known that she was not destined from the start to have that glittery bow in her hair. That´s the thing about Harold. She makes sure to do her best in everything she does so that she can be the best that she can be. Perfection is the best descriptor for her life, and positivity is her style. However, she also comes with sass.

¨If something is incorrect, she informs that person nicely so that they will correct it next time,” Morgan Finch, a good friend of Harold and also a senior on the competition team, said.

The way she is determined to exceed all expectations drives her team to new heights. Harold´s teammates all seem to have nothing but overwhelming praise and admiration for her. She tries her best to get everyone in the right mindset so they won´t stress over anything. [Harold] loves to see improvement and that her teammates all try to perform to their best ability. She has strength both inside and out, and a willingness to get any job done with excellence. Harold never does anything without challenging herself and without perceived benefit. Cheer provides both for her, so maybe that´s why she´s so good at it. Despite her immediate success and comfort with her new sport, Harold still had to work to adjust.

“One thing about cheer that I don’t like as much is that it’s a team sport. I love being a part of the team, but in gymnastics, it´s you competing by yourself. It took me a while to get used to being on a team with fifteen other girls because everyone has to do their part in order for the routine to go well,” Harold said.

She initially felt that she would much rather be fighting to the finish to be number one by herself rather than sharing it with other girls, but she grew to love the family feel of a team over time.

“The most rewarding thing about competition cheer is that it’s a really good way to become best friends with so many girls you never thought you would know. Everyone is so supportive of each other, and we all become so close,” Harold said.

And she would rather have these friends than be first. Harold balances everything so well, knowing her limits and how she can push them. Perhaps most impressive is her humility despite the incredible success she experiences. Harold never seems to want to give herself credit for all her accomplishments and talents. There are not too many people that could be a consistent A student, work a job, and thrive on two competition teams. There are not too many people like Kristen Harold.