A passion for sea animals has led Copperas Cove Junior High School student Gavin Stutz, 12, to dream of studying marine biology at Texas A&M University.
Last year, the A-B student was nominated by teachers for membership in the National Junior Honor Society for maintaining an 85 percent grade average and for good behavior in class.
“I pay attention in classes, and I don’t really talk that much,” Gavin said. “I get my work done. Sometimes I get a C but I always pick (the grade) back up.”
Now a seventh-grader at Copperas Cove Junior High, Gavin plays football for the Cove Parks and Recreation Department and the bassoon for the school band.
He has received awards for his academic performance and his athletic achievements.
Gavin said his favorite school subject is science because it interests him.
“Whenever I grow up I want to be a marine biologist, because I love the creatures in the sea and the different varieties,” he said.
Gavin owns five fish tanks full of salt water fish.
He also works with many different marine animals, including a turtle, he said.
While his parents are happy about his accomplishments, Gavin said they expect no less from their son.
“They make me study and practice the bassoon because that’s my homework,” he said.
“Whenever I need something for projects, they go and get it and help me with the project.”
Gavin admitted his schedule doesn’t allow him to spend much time with friends.
But he’s already made plans to join the Texas Humane Heroes nonprofit organization sometime this year.
“I want to be there to help the dogs, and I also have to have 10 hours of community service for NJHS,” he said.
Although high school is two years away, Gavin is considering studying Spanish and German and joining the golf team.
Unlike most children his age, Gavin spends a lot of his time reading and cleaning.
“Sometimes I’m a little obsessed with it,” he said.