Sibley Senior Spotlight: Tracy Magooba
Sibley Senior Spotlight: Tracy Magooba
Posted on 06/07/2016

The Senior Spotlight series features interviews with Sibley seniors who have shown commitment to academic excellence and personal achievement. The series will highlight two seniors each week until graduation.

Tracy Magooba - Henry Sibley Class of 2016
Senior Tracy Magooba

Daughter of Sheila Nandhego, from South St. Paul

After four years at Henry Sibley High School, one of the strongest memories that Tracy Magooba has from her time at the school also happens to be one of her earliest.

“I remember in my freshman year I was in Ms. (Jennifer) Clem's class and I was having a difficult time seeing the whiteboard from where I was seated,” said Magooba. “Ms. Clem moved me up closer to the front of the class, and after talking to her about my eyesight she recommended I go visit the school nurse. And next thing I know I found out that I needed eyeglasses.”

Receiving your first pair of glasses isn’t often a cherished memory for teenagers, but the glasses have done more than improve Tracy’s eyesight over the last four years. For her, they are a near-daily reminder of the kindness and dedication of one of her teachers.

“Ms. Clem's generosity and understanding definitely made a lasting impression on me, because she had been able to see what I hadn't and she went the extra mile, more than her job as a teacher required. Ms. Clem is a perfect example of many teachers who truly care about the well-being of their students and do everything they possibly can so we, as students, can succeed,” said Magooba.

Her connection with her teachers and fellow students also influenced Tracy’s decision to remain enrolled at Henry Sibley after her family moved out of the district during her senior year.

This summer after graduation, Tracy plans to work, travel some and prepare for enrollment at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minn. in the fall. While Tracy is currently undecided on a major, she is hoping to explore the areas of business, technology, communications and science.

Throughout her time at Henry Sibley, Tracy has participated in the book club and the Upward Bound program. She was also a Link Crew member for two years, and served on the staff of the school newspaper, “Sibley Scribe,” as both an editor and writer.

The classes Tracy has taken over the last four years include a sampling of advanced and college-level courses, such as Advanced American Literature, Advanced World Literature, Advanced Placement (AP) U.S. History, College in the Schools (CIS) Physics, and Literature and Analysis at Inver Hills Community College through the Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) program.

Away from Henry Sibley, Tracy has donated her time to multiple service organizations. She has volunteered with Feed My Starving Children, Second Harvest Heartland, and the Eagan Community Center.

As a result of her hard work in and out of the classroom, Tracy has been awarded multiple scholarships, including the Benedictine Scholarship and President’s Scholarship from the College of St. Benedict. She is also a recipient of the Carl and Eloise Pohlad Scholarship, and recently received another scholarship from Henry Sibley Dollars for Scholars.

Previously, Tracy attended Garlough Environmental Magnet School and Friendly Hills Middle School.

District 197: How has Sibley prepared you to succeed after graduation?
Tracy: There have been many ways that Sibley has prepared me for graduation including meetings and discussions with my counselors, a wide variety of college and advanced classes to choose from, and the continued support and push from the teachers and peers to pursue my college dreams.

Who is your favorite teacher or what is your favorite subject?
I have too many favorite teachers to name one. The list includes Ms. Clem, Mr. (Jason) Laux, Mr. (John) Kelly, Mr. (Stan) Eskierka, Ms. (Sarah) Lund, Mr. (Bob) Guinn, Ms. (Jennifer) Nippert, Ms. (Suzanne) Temple, and the list goes on.

What’s a memory from your time at Sibley that will always stay with you?
There are plenty of memories that will stay with me from Sibley. A significant memory would have to be the cool experiments that were put on by the science department. Ms. Clem exploding a balloon with fire, Mr. Kelly and his cool chemistry experiments.

What advice do you have for younger students about high school?
My advice to younger students would be: understand that the decisions you make now have an impact on the future. Try something new, you never know what could come of it. Don't take the easy way out, be yourself, mistakes happen and it's ok to fail sometimes. Get to know your teachers and most important of all listen to your teachers, because they have seen many kids in your position before and they truly want nothing but the best for you.

Anything else you’d like to share about your time at Sibley?
My time at Sibley has been absolutely amazing–full of highs and lows, crazy and interesting experiences. It will be bittersweet leaving, but I know that Sibley will always be here. I can truly say that I couldn't have ended my high school career anywhere else and I look forward to my future.

Read about other achievements by students in the class of 2016:

-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Joe Quehl
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Kallman Parry
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Masbal Abdullahi
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Serina Vue
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Max Buell
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Andy Nguyen
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Angelina Contreras
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Emma Verby
-Sibley Senior Spotlight: Jose Figueroa Castro
-Hannah Delmont named Henry Sibley's 2016 Athena Award winner
-Cailin McMahon recognized by National Merit Scholarship Program
-Eighty-six Henry Sibley students earn AP Scholars honors
-Moog, Fischer named National Merit Semifinalists
-Meet the School Board's new Student Representative, Drew Conway