Positive People in Pinecrest: Carolyn Wiegert

By Linda Rodriguez Bernfeld….

Carolyn Wiegert

Palmetto High School senior Carolyn Wiegert has spent several summers volunteering at a swim camp helping children three to 10 years old learn how to stay safe in the water.

“It’s a camp that is centered on fun, but it works on basic swim techniques and the four strokes,” she says.

Wiegert has been swimming since she was seven. She swims at a local club, the AquaKids, based at Westminster Christian. The name of the club team is the AK Sharks.

“I like to swim spring events,” she says. “I like the 100 fly and the 200 IM.”

This fall, Wiegert swam for Palmetto and was one of the varsity captains.

When she’s not swimming for Palmetto, Wiegert usually swims the short spring events for the swim club. She says she doesn’t swim in the long course season because it requires a lot more endurance and a different mindset than the short spring events. She also has a lot of extracurricular activities that she takes part in at school, which makes it harder to swim in the long course season.

Wiegert is the co-editor in chief of the Palmetto yearbook this year.

“Last year I was the Real Life editor,” she says. “It covered all aspects of student life — lunch, after school, their jobs, religion and community service — all aspects of student life, inside and outside school.”

That was a challenging publication to put together because the yearbook computers were stolen, so the staff had to recreate sections of the book and find suitable photos to replace those that were digitally stored on the computers.

“That was probably the most stressed we have ever been,” Wiegert says. “I don’t think I expected to make that great a book. We had some mistakes, but we were in such crunch time, and we were so far behind, but we were so proud of what we had done.”

The only advantage was being able to go back and add in details of awards and sports victories that might not have made it into the yearbook otherwise because of deadlines.

“We were really proud,” she says. “Our design was great and our photography was really strong.”

This fall, the yearbook staff received the critiques on last year’s yearbook and they were all very positive.

“We scored in the top level from everyone,” she says. “For the 2009 book, we won a Columbia scholastic press association silver crown, which is the second highest level.”

They won’t know until spring what award the 2009-10 book might receive. The book is still under wraps from the student body because the staff tries to keep details secret. However, there will be some changes.

“We are switching things up a bit,” Wiegert says. “I hope it’s something the kids will like. It’s going to be a lot different than last year’s book.”

One of the lessons learned from last year’s near catastrophe is the need to back-up all the information on a separate system.

“We now have a tetra byte hard drive,” she says. “We hope to back up every week.”

Wiegert’s other extracurricular activities include the Italian Honor Society. She was president last year and vice president this year.

She also joined the organization Common Thread, which teaches cooking to low income elementary school students. The idea is to help the children learn how to eat well so they are not part of the fast food culture. Each week, they cook foods from a different country.

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