HARLINGEN — Although Camryn Hale probably won’t pursue music after high school, her years in the band has prepared her well for life beyond graduation.
“What I have learned is how to be a leader,” said Camryn, this year’s salutatorian of her graduating class at Harlingen High School.
She’s played euphonium in band for several years, but this year she’s had the pleasure of serving as drum major. Years of experience in the Girl Scouts taught her to work with different ages of people; that skill and experience has served her well this year.
“I think that’s helped me as a drum major teaching freshmen, sophomores and juniors,” she said. “I think it’s helped me work with groups when I’m teaching.”
Camryn, 18, said she is more auditory in her learning than visual, and she considers herself a quick learner.
“If I need to study or brush up on something, I like to get it done during class,” she said. “I don’t like to go home to study, because that’s when I work or volunteer.”
She’s served a great number of volunteer hours at First United Methodist Church the past few years; she’s been working at H-E-B on Morgan Boulevard for the past eight months.
“I’m a bagger, but I just got promoted to cashier,” she said.
While Camryn has spent years studying music, she’s more inclined toward business. She’ll attend Texas A&M University in College Station to become an accountant.
There’s more of a connection between such dissimilar subjects that one might at first suspect — both skills require a concept of mathematics.
Perhaps her firm grasp of mathematics enabled her to enjoy her band years while being inspired by one particular music instructor named Alejandro Cavazos.
“It was nice to see a teacher come in with a lot of energy and enthusiasm for what he’s doing,” she said. “If you are having a day where you don’t want to pay attention, he finds a way to bring you back in and make sure you are engaged.”
While many students this year attended class remotely, Camryn did all of her schooling physically in class. She had the pleasure of her senior prom which was “different” (it was outside) but she still enjoyed herself.
“There were not as many people,” she said, “but I was able to go with the group I wanted.”