Get to Know Emily Thomas - Distinguished Young Woman of Massachusetts for 2012

Name: Emily Thomas
Age: 18
Hometown: Bridgewater, MA
College: Merrimack College
Major: Chemistry/Secondary Education

Favorite food: Pizza
Favorite TV show: So You Think You Can Dance
Favorite movie: Forrest Gump
Favorite Christmas/holiday tradition: For Halloween, my family and I go to a farm in New Hampshire where we go on a hay ride and pick pumpkins straight from the patch, then carve them together.
Favorite quote: “Sing like no one’s listening, love like you’ve never been hurt, dance like nobody’s watching, and live like its heaven on earth.” – Mark Twain

Plan ahead OR procrastinate: plan ahead
Paper OR plastic: paper
Glass half-full OR glass half-empty: glass half-full
Introvert OR extrovert: extrovert
Cats OR Dogs: dogs
Morning person OR night person: night person

What is your most embarrassing moment?
During my college orientation, there was a boy’s soccer home game. As a part of orientation, the college set up a barbeque during the game. After getting my plateful of food and drink, I was walking to sit down with my friends and I clumsily tripped, spilling my food everywhere and sending the iced tea down my back. The entire place went silent. I stood up and everyone was staring at me. I looked at all of them, and instead of running away so they could laugh at me later, I stood up introduced myself to try and lighten the mood. It was quite embarrassing, but I tried to make the best of it and I think I did a pretty good job.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three things would you absolutely need for survival?
A boat, a GPS, and my best friend to enjoy the long sail back home with.

What is your biggest fear?
Disappointing people.

What is one goal you have set for yourself and achieved? What is one goal that still remains to be achieved?
When I was younger, it was a dream of mine to climb Mount Washington, the highest mountain in New England. I have always loved hiking, and one day while standing at the top of a much smaller peak, I saw in the distance that top of Mount Washington. I said to myself “I’m going to climb that”, and when I was 14 I successfully climbed 6,288 feet to the top of Mount Washington. As thrilling as that was, I wasn’t fully satisfied. Mount Washington is one of 48 peaks in the White Mountains that are above 4,000 feet. My next goal is to climb to the top of all the 4,000+ peaks in the White Mountains.

What do you want to be when you grow up and why?
I’ve always been someone who loves science, but I couldn’t picture myself in a lab doing solitary research. I’m a people person, which is evident in the types of volunteer work I’ve done in the past. I love helping people, and it’s as simple as that. I decided that becoming a science teacher would be the best way to combine my love for the sciences with my love for helping others. When I grow up, I want to be a high school Chemistry teacher.

Describe your single-most favorite moment from your Distinguished Young Women experience.
Of all the experiences I’ve had with the Distinguished Young Woman program, my favorite was when I came back to meet all the girls competing in my local program for 2013. Here, I got to relive my experiences and memories through story-telling as I explained my involvement in the program and answered their questions. Helping other high school girls gain the knowledge and memories that I have through the Distinguished Young Women program is the ultimate reward that this program has given me, and is something that I will be able to continue to do through the years.

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