When you meet Arianna Chaco, you know she is different. She was born in Guam and started school at a young age, which resulted in her skipping a grade. The high school junior is younger than her peers and that is one of the many things that set her apart from the others.

“I am supposed to be a sophomore. People assume that I am smart and that’s cool. But, they say, ‘It’s because you are Asian’ and they discount my hard work,” Arianna said. “That’s the disadvantage.”

She maintains a 4.0125 GPA and her favorite subject is English. She always loved reading and writing and is president of the Copperas Cove High School Writing Club, which she also founded. Members meet every Wednesday and offer tutoring as well as fictional-writing contests and poetry jams. Arianna is the editor-in-chief of CCHS’ literary magazine, Voices and Visions, and was the managing editor last year.

“Arianna goes the extra mile to study things outside of class and comes back with ideas,” said Janice Stalder, CCHS English and journalism teacher. “She studied artists’ work and now designs the cover of our magazine, which is much more polished under her leadership than in the past. She is also increasing the size of the magazine, which is 35-40 pages.”

Ariana is captain of the UIL Academics Team where she competes in journalism and feature writing, and was CCHS’ first student to advance to the regional competition. Her goal is to qualify for the state UIL. Since Arianna was a freshman, she has been heavily involved in extracurricular activities.

“I am a jack-of-all-trades and master of none. When I am not doing anything, I get burned out. If I am busy, I do better and excel,” Arianna said. “I love trying new things. I want to see what fits me.”

She said she is very creative and looks at things differently than others do.

She loves fashion and fashion design.

“I like to do things myself and follow my own ideas. I hope one day to start my own fashion magazine,” Arianna said.

She said she always wants to add something else on her plate.

“But, I am happy. I am not pressured by another idea. I want to make a change, not just a small one, but in the world,” Arianna said. “I was raised in Cove and I feel I am bigger and want to do more. I may move to New York and go to Columbia.”

But, she said she will need a scholarship to pay for college and will consider an ROTC Air Force scholarship to cover her expenses. Most of her family has served in the military.

She may attend Texas State University or the Air Force Academy and major in mass communications and journalism with a minor in business management.

Arianna maintains three calendars — one for her extracurricular activities, one for her meetings and competitions, and another for her school homework and projects. She also maintains a daily planner with task listings.

“I do everything to understand people. Before I pass a judgment, I need to understand where they are coming from,” Arianna said.

Contact Wendy Sledd at wsledd@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7476

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