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Tomorrow’s leaders: Rebecca Warren

Rebecca Warren grew up learning about the importance of service.

As the daughter of Carol Warren, one of the Holland village’s most active community servants, Rebecca has spent much of her life involved in the projects that her mother supports.

“Most of the stuff she does, I’m kind of tagging along,” the 17-year-old Lakeland High School senior says. “Holland is a small community. It’s good to have that kind of fellowship with the community — to make life a little bit better.”

Whether as a member of Holland Baptist Church — where she serves as a Sunday school teacher, co-directs (with her mother) the church’s Sunday School and sings in the choir — or as a member of the Holland Ruritan Club — where she serves as youth director for the club’s 10 or so youth members — Rebecca believes in giving her best to help improve the lives of those around her.

The same ideal was behind her work this year at Lakeland to restart a long-dormant Student Council, for which she has served as president.

“We wanted to have a way for students to … talk with the administration, to kind of have students have a say” in things like homecoming, fundraisers and other school-related issues, she said.

To encourage students to get involved in the organization and in its efforts on behalf of Lakeland, the SCA has put out suggestion boxes and has led an effort to repair lights and clocks in classrooms throughout the building, Rebecca said.

Another recent SCA program, Hat Day, encouraged them to consider the needs of others outside the school community by raising money for victims of the Haitian earthquake.

The effort fits well with another of Rebecca’s philosophies.

“Don’t limit yourself,” she says. “Work hard. If it’s in God’s will, you can achieve it.”

Following her own advice, Rebecca has enrolled in Virginia Tech’s tough, five-year architectural program, and she already has plans to pursue a master’s degree there.

The college program will be an extension of several years of education and work in the field of architectural design. She participated in the Tidewater Builders’ Association’s Young Designers’ Scholarship Competition in the 9th, 10th and 11th grades, taking third-place honors the first two years and first place last year. She also completed a summer internship last year with McEntire Davis Architects.

“I’ve always been interested in art and design,” she says.

As she prepares for the move to Blacksburg and her entry into a grueling architectural program, Rebecca remains confident about her future.

“You’ll always be all right, as long as you’re following God and your dreams,” she says.

Rebecca is the daughter of Carol Warren of Holland and Alan Warren of Franklin.