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Helping others help themselves: Cass Lake-Bena graduate Taysha Curry pursues psychology

On track to graduate May 27, Cass Lake-Bena High School graduate Taysha Curry lives her life knowing that hard work pays off.

Taysha Curry.jpg
Taysha Curry will graduate as part of Cass Lake-Bena High School’s class of 2022 at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 27.
Courtesy / Nedahness Rose Greene
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CASS LAKE — On track to graduate May 27, Cass Lake-Bena High School graduate Taysha Curry lives her life knowing that hard work pays off.

In the midst of the craziness that inevitably arises with graduation and life after high school, Curry is focusing on attaining her goals and making sense of the mayhem.

“Sometimes, the stress of school and figuring out the future and life in general got to be too much,” Curry said. “But I’d just tell myself that hard work pays off and kept on going.”

She credits her grandparents and mother as her biggest mentors and for instilling a sense of work ethic throughout her life.

This also coincides with her ultimate goal to leading a happy and successful life.

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“That’s why I’ve always made sure to stay on top of things,” she said. “I know what I want and what it takes to get it, so I make sure to do whatever I need to do.”

Setting her sights

Narrowing down on her life goal, Curry plans to pursue psychology at Rocky Mountain College, a four-year private university in Billings, Mont.

Curry chose Montana for two main reasons.

“One of my best friends received an offer to commit to playing basketball at another college in Montana, so I looked around the area to see what colleges came up and applied to Rocky Mountain,” she added. “I received a pretty nice scholarship, which was the main reason I chose to go there.”

Curry chose psychology because of her empathic abilities and to become a psychologist, naturally.

“I’ve always had a great capacity to feel and understand what others are going through,” she said. “I always wanted to help people in ways they couldn’t help themselves.”

Curry has a head start regarding college credits and already has a foundation of knowledge in psychology due in part to Cass Lake-Bena’s chemical dependency counselor Christopher Reopelle.

“(Reopelle) is a psychologist and he really helps me with so many things,” Curry said. “I also took a psychology class, which was a nice little starting point that went over the basics and it’ll be good to have that base before I even get to college.”

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When not in the classroom, Curry has been a three-sport athlete for the Cass Lake-Bena Panthers taking part in volleyball, track and field, and her personal favorite — basketball.

Panthers girls basketball made it to the Class A state tournament this past March and ended their special season after a 54-21 loss to Mountain Iron-Buhl.

Despite the end result, Curry considers that opportunity a personal highlight in her high school career.

“Making it to state with all my friends was something I’ll never forget,” Curry said. “Though it was a sad ending, it was a really good experience and I’m glad I could experience it with people I love.”

The next chapter

Playing basketball was one of Curry’s go-to activities when the coronavirus pandemic took hold in March 2020. Throughout that time of isolation, Curry made the best of the situation.

“Even though it was taking away so many opportunities, I just tried to see the bright side of it,” Curry said. “When I was stuck in the house and needed to let some energy out, I would just play basketball a lot.”

Curry chose to return to in-person learning when students were given the chance mid-way through the 2020-2021 school year.

“I came back to school for the last part of the year. Not many people were back in school, so that was kind of sad,” she added. “But it was difficult to learn and understand everything through a computer.”

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Two years later, Curry isn’t dealing with the uncertainty of the pandemic but rather the excitement that she can walk across the stage to claim her diploma at graduation.

“I’m excited to start the next chapter of my life and really excited to see all my friends graduate,” she said. “We all worked so hard to get to where we are and it just fills my heart to graduate with them. I remember being younger thinking, ‘I can’t wait to finish school,’ and now that we’re here, it’s a little bittersweet.”

Cass Lake-Bena High School’s graduation will take place at 7 p.m. on Friday, May 27.

Daltyn Lofstrom is a reporter at the Bemidji Pioneer focusing on education and community stories.
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