I would like to recognize Karen Perez, a friend of mine. In countless ways, she exemplifies the dedication, passion, and balance possessed by many Red Devils here in Iola. The daughter of immigrants, Karen is a first-generation citizen who has overcome significant barriers to pursue her dreams.
Karens bravery in allowing me to even mention her familys past is to be commended. Intent on escaping murder, kidnappings, and poverty, her parents came to America to give their children the opportunity for the American Dream. Years later, Karens best option to pay for college was via a cross-country and track scholarship, a scholarship contingent on her continued health and ability in her sport.
Since arriving on campus, Karens become an officer of Allens PTK Honors Society. Shes also the co-director of a newly founded Allen Art Club. Karen maintains balance through yoga, journaling, and running on the trails with her Adonis of a dog, Odin. She is also a skilled graphic designer working on a travel brochure for Iola and Thrives LaHarpe campaign. She aspires to work in the field of automotive design.