We reached out to some of our recent alumni and asked how their time at FPD impacted and enriched their lives. We also asked them to share any advice they wish to impart on current FPD students.  Their answers provide a wonderful snapshot of the influence FPD has on its graduates. Below is the first of those snapshots, from 2013 graduate Grace Young.

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What is your favorite memory of FPD?
Grace – One of my favorite memories from my time at FPD would probably have to be making Mrs. Henley’s already interesting 10th Grade Honors Chemistry Class (3rd period) even more hilariously fun by creating superhero alter egos with Lily Garnett and writing stories about “Lithium and Cobalt,” much to the amusement of Mrs. Henley and our classmates. It made lab days endlessly entertaining, and I’m pretty sure it helped me pass that class. To this day, I still tend to pick out things that are cobalt blue, and I still greet Lily with, “Hello Lithium.”

What was your favorite class in high school?
Grace – What was my favorite class? Oh boy, that’s a difficult one. I think it’s a tie between AP United States History with Coach Childs, and AP Language and Composition with Dr. Carreker. I’ve already mentioned the fact that both teachers had a pretty big impact on me, so it would make sense that their classes were two of my favorites. Even though Dr. Carreker scared the living daylights out of me sometimes, I always looked forward to his class because I always knew that I’d learn something new, even if I didn’t immediately realize it at first. Dr. Carreker’s class also helped to shape my writing style as it is today, especially when I do important papers for my English major (Word of wisdom, kids: always include plenty of supporting arguments), yet he encouraged me to explore my own, very unique voice at the same time. Coach Childs’ class, which I had right after Dr. Carreker’s class, often served as a welcome relief from the strict setting of AP Lang, mainly because history has long been my “stress-relief” subject, and much as I prefer European History over American History, a rose is still a rose, and history is still history. It was also just a very fun class because we had such an interesting array of people in it that no 3rd period was ever very boring. Overall, though, I can’t pick just one or two classes as “favorites.”

What is your biggest piece of advice for today’s FPD students?
Grace – My biggest piece of advice for current FPD students? Study. Do your work. Pay attention in class and don’t talk while the teacher is talking. Teachers aren’t just talking for the fun of it, and they probably want to go home just as much as you do. You’re at school to learn, so I really suggest paying attention and, well, learning. I’m not saying that you should chain yourself to your kitchen table every night and throw away the key, but you really should spend more than an hour or two each night doing your homework. Heck, try to get ahead if you can. It’ll make your life easier in the long run, and teachers really appreciate students who give it their 110%. I know it sounds really uptight, and I’m sure that most of my peers would instead tell you to “enjoy your time at FPD because it goes faster than you think,” but remember that success is earned, not randomly given, and someone’s got to say it.


Grace Young (’13) is currently attending Wake Forest University and is a double major in history and English.