WAYLAND, N.Y. (WENY) – Wayland-Cohocton High School's Class of 2018 Valedictorian Mackenzie Curtin is slated to attend the Military Academy at West Point starting this summer.
Curtin has a wide variety of accomplishments, including being the vice president of her senior class, student council treasurer and a member of the 2016 Section V swimming sectional team.
In swimming, she currently holds the school records in the 200 freestyle relay, 400 freestyle relay and the 200 medley relay.
Curtin has been varsity swim captain and All Star since 2015.
She is also a four-year member of varsity track and has played club hockey and been the captain since 2016.
Curtin also is the founder of All Dressed Up, a program that provides formal dresses to high schoolers for balls, proms and other events.
She is also a Padi-certified scuba diver. She has worked as a lifeguard at Letchworth State Park and the Wayland-Cohocton Adult Education Program. She has also been a swim lesson instructor.
In order to attend the academy, applicants must receive a congressional nomination from a representative in Congress, one of two U.S. Senators or the Vice President of the United States. Curtin received her nomination from Congressman Tom Reed.
Cadets must meet age and health requirements and be able to pass the standard military medical exam. Physical requirements require above average strength, agility and endurance and a strong performance on the West Point Candidate Fitness Assessment. Attendance at the academy is predominately male with only 2,800 women attending in the 13,0827 students; and 70 percent of enrollees were in the top fifth of their graduating class. All have exhibited outstanding academic performance and been exceptional leaders in extracurricular activities.
“I’ve been very fortunate to live in a community where I have had the opportunity to take part in a wide-range of activities,” said Curtin. “The ability to succeed here is possible with hard work and commitment. I have had many teachers who have pushed me to learn more and allowed me to find a way to engage in their programs even when they didn’t fit in my schedule.” Often her drive to meet goals has meant setting other more leisurely pursuits aside. The trade-off is having the opportunity to purse her dreams.