Valedictorian Amelia Raether

Maria Cass

After experiencing a  little bit of everything in her high school career, senior Amelia Raether is headed off to Dartmouth College in New Hampshire next year and will leave Benilde-St. Margaret’s with a perfect 4.0 GPA, making her one of the two senior valedictorians. “My goal was always just to try my best, and I actually never expected that I would have a 4.0 by the end of senior year,” said Amelia.

Certain classes at Benilde-St. Margaret’s have reputations for being GPA killers, however, Amelia didn’t shy away from the challenge. “There have been quite a few classes that I almost lost it, Honors English with Mrs. Brew, both semesters I went into the final with an A- and somehow miraculously pulled it up just enough,” said Amelia, describing her freshman year experience which many of her fellow classmates can surely sympathize with. I think in 9th grade I was all about school work, and as I’ve gotten older and the work has increased, I’ve realized how important mental health is,” said Amelia, “you have to balance school, extracurriculars, friendships and relationships, and family too.”

Raether managed to keep a balanced extracurricular schedule and has made the most out of her six years at BSM. Soccer, nordic skiing, speech captain senior year and Knight Errant Editor-in-Chief are a few of the highlights on her impressive resume. “I decided that it might be fun to try writing for the newspaper, it was always kind of magical in a way to see people who wrote things that were actually published,”said Amelia, describing her motivation to take Journalism I as a junior and continue with Journalism II as a senior, at which time she took on the position as Editor-in-Chief.

In the summer of 2009, Amelia, along with a group of friends, plans to travel to the Arctic Circle and embark on a seven week whitewater canoeing trip. “It’s totally different from our typical lives,” said Amelia, “lakes and rivers become your showers, we live without clocks so we wake up and sleep with the sun.”

Although Amelia is still undecided in her major –– citing Spanish, math, English, international relations, politics, and astronomy as possibilities –– she is looking forward to her freshman year at Dartmouth.
“I’m excited to meet a whole new group of people who again challenge what I’m used to and broaden my experiences,” said Amelia.

Amelia’s college selection process, for which she applied early decision, helped her to deal with her self-described indecisiveness. By applying early decision, Amelia committed herself to Dartmouth if she was accepted. “I remember the day decisions were going to be posted online, I kept looking at the clock counting down the time. I couldn’t concentrate all day,” said Amelia, “I just kept thinking ‘how many hours left?'” Amelia had nothing to worry about.  I walked to the library and checked and I just read “Congratulations!” and I clicked out of it and paced around outside because I couldn’t be still trying to call my parents, I was shaking it was great!”

Amelia’s hobbies also extend beyond BSM courses and extracurriculars; Amelia has visited Spain eight times, and she spent three weeks in the summer of 2007 living with family friends in Barcelona. “It was totally different experiencing everything from the viewpoint of a native citizen,” said Amelia, “I absolutely love Spain, I am excited to have more experiences in different countries in years to come. I’m just worried I won’t want to come back to the U.S.”