Elevating Teens: Poky High senior finds joy at the intersection of creating, communicating - East Idaho News
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Elevating Teens: Poky High senior finds joy at the intersection of creating, communicating

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POCATELLO — Finn Mirly is a senior at Pocatello High School. He is a member of the speech and debate team, has interned at INL doing research for the development of nuclear reactor simulators and, in his free time, enjoys creating worlds and exploring them with friends playing Dungeons and Dragons.

Mirly’s favorite thing about speech and debate is the community it creates and encourages. He said that, like other sports, teammates become close. But unlike most other sports, a similar camaraderie is formed between competitors.

“Debaters, even from different schools, really enjoy each other,” he said. “It’s a pretty nice community. I also just enjoy talking.”

When he isn’t researching or competing as part of the speech and debate team he is building and developing as a member of the Haywire Robotics Team.

Haywire is one of two Pocatello-based teams that builds robots for local, state, national and world levels, Mirly said.

These two teams represent the two skills Mirly hopes he’ll be able to combine for a career — engineering and communication.

While interning at INL over the summer, he was part of a group that collected data for the creation of nuclear reactor simulators. During the internship, he was intrigued by the project proposal meetings, in which engineers are required to pitch their plan for new projects in order to obtain funding for those plans.

During spring break last year, Mirly and his father toured four college campuses. He told EastIdahoNews.com his primary concern in selecting which college to attend is the school’s engineering department. He has applied at the University of Cincinnati and also looked at the University of Michigan — Idaho State University is still among the options garnering consideration.

Should he depart his home in eastern Idaho for the midwest, Mirly will miss the mountainous outdoor lifestyle he will leave behind. In his free time, Mirly enjoys hiking, skiing and mountain biking.

Mirly also enjoys Dungeons and Dragons, both as a player and as the creator of the game — the dungeon master.

“It’s two completely different experiences,” he said. “Playing D and D is really fun because it’s a social activity, you’re spending time with your friends just being silly. But then DM’ing — or being a dungeon master — is also fun because your get to be creative, you get to make your own world.”