Senior Profiles: Nia Callion

Grace Klebe, Entertainment writer

Attending Rockhurst University

Switching schools after sophomore year was nerve-wracking for Nia Callion, senior. Transferring from Lafayette High School, Callion entered KHS without knowing many people. Although she often said starting KHS junior year was terrifying, her coaches and friends say she handled the change with complete ease.

“She immediately [worked] really well [with the team]. We had a strong voice on attack and midfield so to have one on defense was really helpful,” Janelle Larson, KHS girls lacrosse coach, said.

Growing up, Callion played softball, football, lacrosse, kickball, ran cross country and took dance classes. She attended elementary and middle school in the Rockwood School District and started her freshman year at Lafayette High School.

“I was nervous [about starting high school] because I was really short and high schoolers looked like grown ups,” Callion said. “I thought it was going to be like what you see on TV, how everyone is always sitting around in the hallway and there’s so much free time. I also thought there was going to be the ‘cool kids’ and the ‘nerds,’ but high school isn’t like that at all.”

Although Callion was nervous about the transition, having a cousin who already attended KHS helped calm her nerves. She had also connected with Hannah Holloway, senior, during the lacrosse camp the previous summer.

“I was scared because everybody [at KHS] already knew each other,” Callion said. “It was going to be really interesting to see if people would like me or be like ‘I don’t want to talk to this new girl, she’s only going to be here two years.’”

Holloway remembers the warm greeting she gave Callion her first day at KHS and how they became instant friends. They have been inseparable since then, on the field and off.

“She’s such a nice, genuine person, and from my perspective looking in, I think the transition went really well for her,” Holloway said. “I think she does really like Kirkwood. I’m really glad she transferred here.”

Callion is involved with many activities at KHS, such as lacrosse, Black Student Union, BACC and Gateway 2 Change. She said she looks forward to playing lacrosse next year at Rockhurst.

“Nia is so intense [on the field],” Holloway said. “If I had to play against her I would cry, she’s so intimidating and such a good defender. She has such good general field knowledge. Sometimes she gets a little frustrated, but we all do.”

Nia has enjoyed her short time at KHS and feels much more confident walking through the halls. She likes being able to blame not completing her homework on senioritis.
“I love Kirkwood so much more [than Lafayette],” Callion said. “The community around us is so great: they tailgate [and] they come to all of the games. I never experienced that at Lafayette.”