The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


The Student News Site of Shawnee Mission Northwest


Something Real


Senior Abigail Quick leads a normal teenage life. 

She reads bad romance novels, loves her dog, hates math and spends time with friends.

But she also wrote a 4,000 word essay about the influence developing PCR DNA profiling had on catching the Golden State killer. 

Quick’s version of “fun” is spent in a lab. She’s an IB Diploma student with a passion for biology and an aspiration to attend medical school. Just four months ago, instead of doom scrolling on TikTok or deciding between french tip, bubble bath and funny bunny nails, Quick was in Kenya for 10 days designing the structural layout of affordable housing units. 

“The most important thing was maintaining local architecture styles,” Quick said. “I got to talk with engineers, and learning from them was a great experience. Sure, I was involved with the blanket drive, and that was nice. But this felt real.”

For the last four years Quick has been consumed by volunteer hours, Canva flyers and study halls.

As students ate lunch in the library, gathered for club meetings and creative writing read-alouds, many could see Quick with a hot pink highlighter jutting from her mouth, buried in the nearest textbook. 

So much of her life has been dedicated to school, checking grades, cleaning creeks, working to mold Shawnee, Kansas into a better place.

Soon enough, Quick will no longer be confined by campus guidelines or open lunch policies.

This is her chance to make change. Because now there would be no more waiting until the weekend, spring break or summer, even though a part of her will miss it.

  “I feel like I’m leaving a part of myself behind,” Quick said. “I’m never going to be 17, and a senior in high school, with all my friends at my fingertips ever again. This makes me sad, but I’m so excited for the future. Excited to finally go do something with my life.”

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About the Contributor
Sofia Ball
Sofia Ball, Writer
Hi! My name is Sofia Ball and I am a writer for the Northwest Passage. Writing started out as a hobby for me. Something I never imagined I would be good at until about 7th grade after taking a creative writing class with Dr. Van Zant. I just started out as a freshman, and already, I've come to know and love many of the classes, teachers and students here at Northwest. I’d like to think of myself as an extrovert, but most of my freetime is spent either reading, writing or watching Netflix in my bedroom. I used to watch The Office all the time before it got removed. The only time you'll ever see me out and about is probably at Cross Country or Track practice. You may even see me handing out our latest newspaper issues around the school.

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