- Cherry Creek School District No. 5
Eaglecrest senior finds the gift of giving back
Eaglecrest junior Kellie Brady loves giving gifts, but admits she finds it intimidating.
“It’s so nerve-wracking after all the time you put into it,” Brady said. “You hope they love it and enjoy it as much as you enjoyed picking it out or making it.”
These days, Brady has found the best gifts she can give someone are the gifts of kindness. Brady is a member of Key Club, a school-focused branch of the Kiwanis Club that helps students learn the joy of philanthropy. Brady follows in the footsteps of her father, who was also a member of Key Club as a high school student and who continues to give back.
“My father visited nursing homes around the holidays to visit with seniors when he was in Key Club,” Brady said. “We learned growing up how important it was to give back when we had so much to be grateful for.”
After volunteering at different places, Brady learned she wants to focus her time on environmental causes. She’s learned that she prefers working in the background, where she can give back without the pressure of a spotlight. She encourages others to try different places and activities when volunteering to know what the best fit is.
“Growing up right now, we’re seeing wildfires and environmental concerns that I know my generation will have to deal with,” Brady said. “Why not start now?”
Science was a saving grace for Brady, who admits that she was not a good student in elementary and middle school. When she took a chemistry class in eighth grade, she fell in love.
“I actually understood it in a way that really made sense to me,” Brady said. “I usually scored more than 100% on tests and it was amazing to find something I was good at and passionate about. I found something that really spoke to me.”
That class set the stage for Brady’s high school success; she credits her current straight-A average to buckling down and focusing on her studies. She is now taking the pharmacy technician course at the Cherry Creek Innovation Campus. She is still considering her career path and is excited for the many options she sees in front of her. While she doesn’t yet know if she will become a pharmacy technician, civil engineer or work in water treatment, she knows that she’s been given a wonderful gift through her own experiences.
“Everything I’ve learned from school and volunteering has taught me how important it is to learn and give back,” Brady said. “Education and experiences are incredible gifts.”