Katherine (Kate) Frait Milan Class of 2018 Valedictorian

Photo by Balinda Zimmerman
Katherine Frait.

By Balinda Zimmerman
 
Of the estimated 200 senior class students in Milan High School, Class of 2018, Katherine (Kate) Frait has earned the honored distinction of Valedictorian. Along the way, she succeeded in completing all nine of the AP classes offered at MHS. Many students take AP classes to get into college or to appease parents. Kate explains how she took them all because she saw it as a challenge after told it was near impossible to accomplish. All of the AP classes offered and completed by Kate are: AP Chemistry, AP Biology, AP Physics, AP U.S. Government, AP Lit & Composition, AP Statistics, AP Calculus AB, AP U.S. History and AP Language and Composition.
In 2017, Kate was named AP Scholar with Distinction as the only Junior MHS student to complete 5 AP classes. The AP students are graded on a 5.0 scale vs. the 4.0 scale of the average student, and as the MHS Valedictorian, Kate has earned a 4.8 GPA.
Kate’s mother, Kirsten Jensen Frait, studied Biological Sciences and Ecology at the Michigan Technological University and her father, Steve is an engineer at Ford so it would appear as though Kate is following in her parents footsteps.
Kate attended Ford High School Science and Technology, offered as once a month classes for 3-hour Engineering events. Students must attend 5 of the 6 events offered from October to March each year in order to be offered an internship at Ford the following summer. Kate completed her classes and was offered a 6-week internship at the Vehicle Emissions Research Lab. Her mentor was a chemist and she was able to work with the Dynometer (Ford has two), testing vehicle emissions.
At the end of her term, Kate interviewed her Ford co-workers and gave a presentation to them regarding how she perceived what they did and the research involved. This is an unpaid internship but it earns a $2500 scholarship plus he opportunity to apply for future internships. Milan currently has six students completing the program that will qualify them for the internship in August 2018.
Kate also attended the Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) and Girls in Science and Engineering (GISE) programs during the summer months of 2014 and 2015 held at the University of Michigan. Kate learned through the MHS 2017 Valedictorian, Maria Contreras, about the Joyce Ivy Foundation’s need based scholarship for Midwest girls to attend Ivy League schools and she applied right away.
She was accepted to the Harvard Pre-college program through Joyce Ivy Foundation. This is a 2-week program, 3 hours a day for 5 days a week equaling one-college semester. She took Introduction to Quantum Physics, stayed in the dorms and ate meals at the famous Wallis Annenburg Hall. Kate attributes this program to what she would experience as a true college student on campus.
She was able to attend two additional lectures and even participated in a whale-watching trip in Boston. She explains that she was a quite terrified going into the program because she was one of only eight students in attendance on a merit-based scholarship. All others had paid a high fee to attend the program, as did her roommate who was from Switzerland and required a room safe for her Gucci sunglasses.
Kate has also attended the MASC/MAHS Leadership Camp at Albion which focuses on leadership skills. Mr. Rodan had recommended Kate for the program and assisted in helping her obtain a scholarship as well. She is also a member of the Milan National Honor Society – 3 years, an Executive Member of the MHS Student council (Treasurer), 3-year Milan Youth Council member, and 4 years in Theatre (acting and stage tech).  
Kate is also a tutor of Math, Geometry and Algebra, taught swim lessons via Milan Swim Club, volunteers at the GMACF yearly Gala, Pancakes with Princesses, reads to Paddock students, performs community service with Bingo nights and then attends WCC classes studying Business Law and Intro to Philosophy. In 2017, Kate was part of the Dual Enrollment program attending EMU and studying Health.  
 Kate has applied and been accepted to U of M, Michigan State, Oakland, Michigan Tech, Purdue, Ohio State, and Utah State. She also applied to Cornell, Columbia and Harvard but is still waiting for responses to those three colleges.

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