Home | News | Opinion | Entertainment | Student Life | Trends | Sports|
Connecting Cultures
| Archived

Student Spotlight: Melissa Kim

Shelbie Souza '15
Staff Reporter
December 12, 2012

Melissa Kim, a senior at Durfee High School sits across the table and discusses a “typical” family vacation that unknowingly would change her life forever.

Melissa, a Cambodian-American, spoke Khmer before learning how to speak English. She took her first vacation to Cambodia when she was about 6 years old, right before 9/11.

“It was so weird,” she said almost in awe, “The day after we flew out of New York City, the 9/11 terrorist attacks took place.” Melissa and her mother then stayed in Cambodia for a month.

Durfee senior Melissa Kim.
                                                   --Hilltop File Photo

Melissa was born the youngest of three children in Fall River, Massachusetts. She has an older brother Phea (23) and an older sister Leakna (22). As a young child and even now, her fondest memories revolve around visiting her family that lives in Canada, and visiting Niagara Falls.

As a senior, Melissa is involved in many extra-curricular activities, and is preparing for acceptance letters to colleges she has been interested in.

“I applied to Brown University,” she said, beaming when asked about her college choices.

She is currently the vice-president of Durfee’s Connecting Cultures Club. She is also committed to the Future Educators and plays tennis for Durfee in the spring. In her spare time Melissa volunteers in a medical office and at CD Rec. She loves science and plans to pursue a career in the medical field, after attending a four year college. She not only commits her time to after-school activities, but also keeps a job at Whites of Westport.

“Work has taught me to be responsible with money and with time management, it has really been the best learning experience for me.”

As a 17 year old girl, Melissa holds one of her greatest accomplishments in hand- her driver’s license. Melissa now feels she has the freedom to go wherever she wants. With that freedom, she one day hopes to be able to travel worldwide, and one of the first places she would like to visit is the Great Wall of China.

If you’re out on the town, you will probably catch Melissa at an IHOP or Applebee’s. She is very social and loves meeting new people and always enjoys lending a hand when it is needed. She does not let negativity get the best of her, and she always remains an ambitious girl, motivated for her bright future.