Senior Spotlight: Derrick

Derrick Eley, Jr.
Hopewell High School

Please meet Derrick, a proud graduate of Hopewell High School as of June 8, 2024! This fall, Derrick is headed to UNC-Charlotte on a football scholarship. However, while Derrick is excited to play football at the college level, he says his CIS Site Coordinator, Nyja Cauley, has influenced his vision of his college experience and what it can do for his future.

“Being in CIS and working with Ms. Cauley showed me different ways to look at college instead of only from the sports/athlete perspective,” said Derrick. “She taught me how important your college experience can be in setting you up for the future.” 

“My short-term goal for college is to get settled in and learn how to manage everything with sports and my classes,” Derrick added. “But my long-term goal for college is to maximize my abilities and skills and become successful beyond sports.”

According to Ms. Cauley, Derrick has always been a quiet, humble student, but also a “force to be reckoned with.” She said this past year she pushed Derrick outside his comfort zone as an athlete and opened his realm to more opportunities beyond sports. “He pushed himself to think critically, and I saw a lot of growth in Derrick since the beginning of the school year.”

“I see a superstar forming in Derrick,” Ms. Cauley added. “Whether in the sports arena or another career field, Derrick will be successful.”

Congratulations, Derrick! #NinerNation is lucky to have you!

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