Senior Profile: Erin Leahy

Abby Christensen, news writer

In the middle of her freshman year, Erin Leahy moved 1,259 miles from a school of 400 students, to a school with 400 students per grade. Erin moved from Phoenix, Arizona to Kirkwood Dec. 18, 2010, just before the end of the first semester. She found the transition to be difficult, mostly because of the drastically bigger class size at KHS.

“KHS is just so different, because there were so many people in the halls,” Erin said. “It just was not what I was used to at all.”

According to Erin freshman year was difficult. She did not want to move at first and was sad to leave her whole life behind. She found it challenging to make friends at first, but began to meet people through participating in Kirkwood Youth Service (KYS) and playing basketball and soccer. As she began to find her way around and meet more people sophomore year, she liked KHS more and more.

Erin became more comfortable at KHS throughout sophomore year, but once she joined DECA she knew she had found her place. Erin was placed in a business class sophomore year, where she was approached about joining DECA by her business teacher, Mr. Bunton. While she thought she would hate the class, she found that she actually enjoyed it. She competed in DECA that year, and decided to sign up to become an officer junior year. Throughout her years in DECA, Erin has competed in districts, state and qualified for the international competition all this year and last year.

Erin’s success in DECA has come full circle this year as she is the current president of the club. She says the experience has been great because it drew her out of her comfort zone, forcing her to lead others, which is a sharp contrast from her reserved personality.

“I wouldn’t ever think I could do something like this, talking in front of other people and making decisions for a business club,” Erin said.

Erin said joining DECA has been an extremely rewarding experience. She says it helped her become more involved at KHS, meet more people, gain experience in business and leadership and discover her goal of owning her own bakery one day.

Erin plans on attending Benedictine College and majoring in elementary education. She wants to teach but eventually plans to open her own bakery and hold cooking classes for children there. She hopes her experience in DECA will help her dream to come true.