By ANDREW NELSON, Staff Writer | Published June 9, 2011
Hedith Lopez-Gomez once challenged herself to do something extraordinary: Step out of her comfort zone.
So as a freshman, the 17-year-old sang in the school’s choral Winter Concert. She sang a solo in front of the large audience.
It’s that attitude driving Hedith as she moves from Tri-Cities High School, in East Point, to Emory University where she plans to study biomedical engineering. Then, she wants to do missionary work.
“I chose this path because I want to give all that I can for the benefit of mankind with humility as my strongest trait,” she said.
Asked about her ideal job, Hedith said, “One that involves me traveling the world.”
She graduated from Tri-Cities High School, as valedictorian, at the top of her class of 461 seniors.
She is one of six children of Maria del Carmen Gomez de Lopez and Santiago M. Lopez. She and her family worship at St. John the Evangelist Church, in Hapeville. Hedith can be found in the choir loft where she sings, and volunteering to do anything left undone, from lectoring to cleaning at the church where she spends a lot of time.
In high school, she was active in the International Club, Distributive Education Clubs of America, with a focus on marketing, and a volunteer for the Hands on Atlanta Discovery Program at Parklane Elementary School.
“I liked feeling a part of something bigger—something designed to help others. Through all these clubs, I learned much more than what is taught through textbooks,” Hedith wrote by e-mail. She also enjoys writing, from poetry to stream of consciousness musings.
Looking to younger students, Hedith had some advice that mixed fun with seriousness.
“Make deadlines and meet them all. Defy all expectations! Don’t procrastinate and don’t be lazy. Also, be sure to have fun!” she said.
What are her thoughts as she leaves high school?
“I am anxious to see what will become of the Class of 2011,” she wrote. “There is so much talent, passion and motivation inside each of us. I know that if we stay on the right path, we will overcome all obstacles and leave behind an irreplaceable and beneficial mark.”