Palmetto High School junior Daniel Larkin has found his passion. A baseball player for 13 years playing in the Howard Palmetto Baseball Softball Association league and on the Patriots Travel team, Larkin switched sports his freshman year and is now playing lacrosse.
“I was kind of bored with baseball and lacrosse is fast paced and has more action,” Larkin says.
He has tried several different sports over the years, including playing basketball in the Beth Am League, and soccer and flag football. He likes all types of action, including the action of debate. He is in the National Forensics League (NFL) and he’s in the debate class.
Larkin’s debate style is Public Forum. He participates in debates with a partner and they take on issues such as “Should the UN Prioritize Global Poverty Issues Over Environmental Concerns”. Another of the debates last year dealt with President Obama’s plan to send 30,000 additional troops to Afghanistan.
“What interests me is that I learn how to argue a point and I enjoy the knowledge I gain from researching the topics,” he says. “You have to know the topic so you can argue it without reading it off the paper.”
Other school related activities for Larkin include the National Honor Society, the Science National Honor Society and Mu Alpha Theta.
“This is my first year as an official member,” he says. “I plan on trying out for (math) competitions.”
Larkin is also a member of Key Club, a service organization. Through Key Club he will participate in numerous community service projects. He also earned service hours by helping friends with their Eagle Scout projects.
Larkin’s community service includes eight weeks as a counselor in training at the Dave and Mary Alper Jewish Community Center’s summer sports camp.
“I worked with six and seven year olds,” he says. “They learned to play basketball and soccer, and they learned to play hockey with plastic sticks and a rubber ball; and they played kickball.”
There were times when Larkin would play with the kids instead of just supervising the games.
“It was a lot of fun, and I got to know and become close with a lot of the campers,” he says. “It was fun to supervise.”
These days, he’s trying something new. He’s now a DJ and works occasional parties.
“Maybe one day I plan to do bar and bat mitzvahs,” he says. “I use mainly electronic dance music.”
He’s self taught, but likes to DJ so much that he has purchased some equipment.
Larkin also has his eye on the future. He’s edging into his college search and is already thinking about possible colleges and majors. His list of schools includes the University of Florida (where his sisters attend), the University of Central Florida and Florida State University.
“It would be my dream to go to school in California, but there are also some interesting schools in North Carolina,” he says.
He’s visited the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Appalachian University in Boone.
“I visited there at a lacrosse tournament this summer,” he says. “I have family in Boone.”
As for his major, Larkin says he enjoys chemistry and science, so he is considering pharmacology or pharmaceuticals, and maybe something outside of science, possibly in the business realm.