Highland senior athlete awarded academic scholarship to attend BYU-I - East Idaho News
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Highland senior athlete awarded academic scholarship to attend BYU-I

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POCATELLO — Audrey Herron is a senior at Highland High School. A former track and cross-country runner, she has spent her high school years throwing the shot-put and discus for the Highland track and field team. She will attend Brigham Young University-Idaho next year on a full academic scholarship.

Herron earned a scholarship she said was awarded based on GPA, SAT and ACT scores.

“I scored high enough that I got full tuition for my freshman year,” she said. “I worked super-hard for it.”

Next Fall, Herron will attend BYU-I, where she will major in education with an emphasis in English. Because she loves math and may be interested in teaching it in the future, she plans to minor in mathematics.

The goal, she said, is to teach at the high school level. Why? Because she believes that is when people begin making decisions that will shape them for the rest of their lives, and she wants to help students make the right ones.

“I want to be there for people when they need it most,” she said. “I’ve had many good teachers, myself, so I just want to be that for another person in the future.”

Born and raised in Pocatello, Herron suspects she will return to her hometown to pursue her career. She called the idea of teaching at Highland in the future “so cool.”

Through elementary and middle school, Herron was a runner — competing in track and cross country. But in high school, she has refocused her athletic endeavors. The upcoming season will be her fourth on the Highland Track and Field team throwing both the shot-put and discus.

When she isn’t competing and studying, Herron enjoys drawing, singing and playing piano.

She has done the latter for as long as she can remember. The past month has been the longest she has gone without playing after her home burned down on Jan. 3.

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Like nearly all seniors, Herron’s freshman and sophomore years of high school were greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Like a few of those same students, her junior year took a hit when a fire damaged a high school.

RELATED | Highland High School Fire caused by electrical failure; accidental in nature

Like fewer still, Herron’s senior year has been marred by the destruction of her home.

Asked how she has powered through these adversities, Herron said: “Education has always mattered to me.”

She said she took the shutdown, then hybrid classes, as an opportunity to work at her own pace and develop new methods. She admits that during that time, she was hit with some level of depression but knew she could get through it.

“I came away thinking, ‘OK, if I just get through these couple years, everything will work out,'” she said.

A serial optimist, she had to exercise that optimism again when her school burned. Then again last month when a fire destroyed her house.

Herron said she just kept her eyes on a simple goal — maintaining focus and earning a scholarship would save her and her family thousands of dollars. Now, she has achieved that goal and hopes to teach future students to do the same.