DRAFFENVILLE — For Summer Davis, the sky’s the limit.
The 18-year-old Marshall County High School senior gets involved in as many activities as she can.
A few of her personal interests are golfing, fishing, traveling, camping, playing guitar and riding horses. Davis also enjoys staying in shape through running. She started running at Mike Miller Park her junior year and was immediately hooked. Since then, she’s run several 5K races, including many for charity. Davis earned first place in her division in the Fred Paxton Fund Run in Paducah in 2010 and at the Joey Adams Memorial 5K Run in Mayfield the same year. She also competed in the Midsummer Night’s Hospital Benefit Run in Lexington in 2010. Running not only keeps Davis healthy; she draws philosophical parallels between the sport and life’s hard times.
“(Running) has helped me realize that no matter how much strength you have lost, you can reach deep inside and find motivation to finish the race,” she said.
Davis is on the school’s track, cross country and tennis teams. She also competes in a powder puff football league and was a member of the cheerleading squad from 2007 to 2009. She’s the editor of “Marshall Roundup,” the high school section of the Marshall County Tribune-Courier, and is a student ambassador. She’s also Beta Club secretary, Student Council senior representative and a member of National Honor Society, Who’s Who Among American High School Students, Health Occupation Students of America and Future Farmers of America.
She has accumulated dozens of honors and awards through her high school years, including honor roll, gifted and talented program, Class Favorite in 2007 and 2008, FFA Presidential Award, second place for regional creed speaking in FFA, fourth place in medical math at the HOSA state competition and FFA Star Greenhand Award. She was also nominated for the National Young Leaders Conference in 2010 and the National Youth Leadership Forum on Medicine.
Outer beauty? Davis has that, too. She was voted best looking by her senior class, was a 2010 runner-up in the Gwen Moss Model Search and was a member of homecoming court from 2007 to 2009.
But Davis is by no means just a pretty face. People are her passion. She has been an active member of Zion’s Cause Baptist Church near Draffenville since she was in third grade and takes every opportunity to perform community service work both through the church and on her own. For a week each in 2008 and 2009, Davis volunteered to do mission work with disadvantaged children in Nashville, Tenn. To hear Davis’ story of her mission work in her own words, watch the video interview at paducahsun.com.
She also volunteered at the Western Baptist Hospital Rehabilitation Center and Lourdes Transitional Care, both in 2010. Somehow between volunteering and extracurricular activities, Davis still manages to hold a part-time job as a receptionist at Bahama Breeze tanning salon in Draffenville.
Davis credits the health careers program at her school and involvement in HOSA with sparking her interest in health care. Davis excels at mathematics and science. She hopes to parlay that interest into a medical career. Davis is considering Murray State University, West Kentucky Community & Technical College and the University of Kentucky as options after high school graduation. If she chooses WKCTC, Davis plans to enroll in the UK College of Engineering’s Paducah campus and pursue a degree in chemical engineering, followed by pharmacy school. If she chooses MSU or UK’s Lexington campus, she plans to earn a chemistry degree, then enter pharmacy or medical school.
She also holds a 3.96 grade-point average, a 31 ACT composite score and is ranked ninth in a class of 306 students.
Davis’ Advanced Placement U.S. history teacher, Andrew Pagel, called Davis a blessing to have in class.
“I do not often see the blend of talent, character and hard work that I saw on an everyday basis (in Davis),” he said. “Add to that a genuine interest in learning and improving herself and you have an ideal student; one that will positively impact (a) campus during her college years.”
With so many accomplishments already under her belt, it seems Davis is more than ready to tackle anything college throws her way. So it’s no surprise that she is Teen of the Week.
Summer Davis, daughter of David and Paula Davis, is the Murray State University Teen of the Week. Each Monday, the Sun features a different MSU Teen of the Week selected from nominees submitted by high school guidance counselors throughout western Kentucky and southern Illinois. In May, a Teen of the Year will be chosen from the weekly winners, earning a $5,000 scholarship to Murray State. Teen of the Week is part of the Sun’s Newspapers in Education program.
Contact Danielle Ray, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8657.