Thomas Quinn is a senior at Summit High School. At a young age, on his family’s boat in Bay Head, he showed an interest in sailing which then became a passion. Thomas is Captain of Varsity Sailing, and has been part of the team throughout all four years of high school. His crew at SHS is Kelsey Kennedy. Thomas also sails in the summer with a laser team. One highlight of his sailing career has been competing in the Canadian National Championship. Sailing against Olympians, Thomas gained valuable experience, honed his skills, and placed 18th overall.
In addition to sports, Thomas is President of Student Council for the 2017-2018 school year. Along with his peers, he recently planned a successful pep rally at the beginning of October, and the group hopes to plan another in late fall. He is looking forward to continuing the SHS tradition of the hallway decorating contest in November as well. A confident leader, Thomas attributes his success to his strong public speaking skills. He is also very organized which allows him to prepare his agenda and key points when talking to administrators.
Thomas enjoys community service. He has helped with Toys for Tots, a day where he interacted with children who do not have what many do at the holiday season. Additionally, Thomas has been part of the Interact Club for the past three years. This community service club allows students to be involved in many service projects. For example, as a sophomore and junior he held a seat on the board of the Operation Smile Club, running a silent auction and raffle, all with the goal to raise money for children in need of critical facial surgeries.
Academic success is important to Thomas. He has a full course load, taking six AP classes this year. Thomas has to offer others is, “Take advantage of different opportunities. Work with the advisors of your classes or clubs to build solid relationships.” Being level-headed and organized has gone a long way for Thomas, as has following advice he received from an influential coach early on who said that “every race is a new race.” Thomas has learned that when he encounters a challenge or setback, he needs to clear his head and start fresh. He thinks it is important to not let unfortunate events, people, or circumstances affect moving forward. He also subscribes to the theory of “thinking smart.” When he needs to reach a goal, he creates a game plan. He does this by looking at the end result and then plans backwards so that he can follow a clear path.
Summit High School has meant a lot to Thomas. He hopes that those who come after him will learn that getting involved in clubs, sports, and/or activities is key. “You only have four years of high school and these relationships and experiences will add so much to your personal enjoyment.” What motivated Thomas is that he does not want to have regrets, or in hindsight think that he could have done more.
The future looks bright for Thomas. He would like to be a Television Journalist, a career that would capitalize on his non-fiction writing, ease of being in front of the camera, and goal of relaying information to others. Following certain role models, such as David Muir, inspires Thomas. He sees how many have charted their own course, set goals to achieve, and have the utmost respect for their role in covering the news.
Respect is something Thomas has as well. “I would not be successful alone. It is my family, coaches, counselors, sailing team, Student Council… everyone who has been supportive of me. Without that strong base I would not be where I am today,” explained Thomas. And with that support in this life, there is no doubt that Thomas will continue to excel.