Samuel Lambert likes to understand how things work and sees engineering as the profession for him.
"Engineering interests me because I like to understand how things work and, specifically, environmental engineering interests me because I like to understand how humans impact the environment and how we can make our lifestyle more sustainable," he said.
The 18-year-old Paducah Tilghman High School senior is looking at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Kentucky and Purdue University for college, but noted that UK is probably where he will go.
"At GSP (Governor's Scholars Program), I studied environmental and biological issues," Lambert said. "I really enjoyed that and it's just the most interesting subjects to me because it's like a little bit of biology and then I can combine that with physics and maybe some chemistry."
Lambert credits the program and a visit to a tree farm for helping him realize his passion for the environment. He wants to make buildings have "less impact," or be less harmful to the environment, while making them last, preserving historical significance and introducing modern techniques.
Lambert, son of Sarah and James Lambert of Paducah, is the Paducah Bank Teen of the Week.
Each Monday and Tuesday, The Sun publishes profile stories on area high school seniors who are chosen from a pool of nominees for Teen of the Week recognition. Around the end of the school year, a selection committee will pick one of these students for Teen of the Year, which carries a $5,000 scholarship. Another student will be honored with an Inspiration Award and a $1,000 scholarship.
Lambert's academic standing is among the top of his class at Paducah Tilghman.
He is ranked fourth in his class with a weighted GPA above 4.3 and 33 composite ACT score. He's also an AP Scholar with Distinction who attended both Governor's School for Entrepreneurs and GSP at Transylvania University and Morehead State University, respectively.
He was recently recognized as a school winner in the Heisman High School Scholarship Program, which honors the nation's "most accomplished, community-minded high school senior athletes."
Lambert does many extracurricular activities at Paducah Tilghman and has played varsity soccer, tennis and golf for years. He takes part in academic team, Interact Club, National Honor Society, Beta Club and other activities, such as being a Tilghman school ambassador. Lambert's community involvement includes serving as a Paducah Human Rights Commission student intern.
Soccer is his favorite of the three sports.
"I enjoy the teamwork and I feel that it has helped me with time management," he said, about sports. "It's also really fun to hang out with your friends and do something with them like a group project or effort."
In his spare time, Lambert said he likes to hit the gym and hang out with friends. He's staying busy with AP courses for senior year, which is going well.
"I will miss my friends, but I know we'll keep in touch," he said. "I'm mostly excited and feel positive towards going to college."