Q&A: Gersten Sees Herself in France Down the Road

National Merit Finalists share thoughts about their high school experience.


Editor's Note: Lake Forest High School seniors finished classes May 23. This is the fourth in a series of Q&A articles appearing periodically between now and June 2 when Lake Forest's Class of 2012 graduates. Lake Forest-Lake Bluff Patch has asked the senior class' National Merit Finalists to answer some traditional and not-so traditional questions about their high school experience.

Read the previous profiles: , ,


Name:  Hannah Gersten

Year at LFHS: Senior

Attending college next fall? Where? Why did you pick that school? If not college, what are your plans?

Tufts University in Medford, Mass. I walked onto the campus and immediately felt a connection that I hadn't felt at any other school I visited. I'm thrilled to be a Tufts Jumbo next year! I'm hoping to study French and International Relations.

What was your favorite class in high school, and why?

I loved my AP Literature and Composition class this year. We tackled some incredible literature (Crime and Punishment, Heart of Darkness, and Beloved, for example) and I enjoyed learning and discussing these works with other students who love English as much as I do.

What was your least favorite class in high school, and why?

It's hard to say - and I think that's a good thing. Science is my least favorite subject, but with the help of some amazing teachers and my peers, I've managed to make it through four years of challenging science courses. There has been something positive about every class I've taken at LFHS.

What class do you wish you had been able to take, and why?

I would have loved to take an art class. Art is so therapeutic and our school's options are great.

Did you participate in extracurricular activities? Which one or ones?

Yes - Bel Cantos, Madrigals, Forensics, Theatre, and Swimming. 

Is there an extracurricular activity you wish you had been able to try? Why?

I wish I had tried Debate! Four years of persuasive speaking as a member of the Forensics team improved my public speaking drastically, but I think that the Debate team would have offered some different experiences.

Are your study habits the same as they were four years ago? If no, what has changed? If yes, describe your study habits?

If anything, my study habits have drooped a little bit this year. I've become a procrastinator! Four years ago, I was always prepared for anything my classes had to throw at me, and homework was done the night it was assigned (not the morning it was due). I think this summer is a much-needed cooling off period before I jump into the demands of college.

What advice would you pass on to incoming freshmen at LFHS?

Do what you love! Get involved in something you're passionate about and stay with it! Extra-curricular activities are important in their quality, not their quantity. Becoming a leader in some area of the school will give you incredible confidence, and will make your four years so much more worthwhile.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

I see myself in France!

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