Senior Spotlight: Kaytlyn

Class of 2022
East Mecklenburg High School

CIS senior Kaytlyn Goldson from East Mecklenburg High School is one of those rare students who seems to be able to do it all – juggling a demanding IB class schedule at East Meck with dual-enrollment (for college credit) classes at CPCC, along with a school sport (volleyball), a part-timejob, participating in many CIS opportunities, and her personal life – all of this while maintaining a 4.4 GPA and being recognized as one of East Meck’s Top 20 Seniors!

According to Kaytlyn’s CIS Site Coordinator, Carlea Atkinson, Kaytlyn has been involved in CIS since the ninth grade, and she has made a “big impact” on the program.  “I can honestly say that Kaytlyn is very involved in everything that CIS offers to students,” said Atkinson. “She is a student that I can rely on for anything. She is extremely helpful , volunteering whenever needed, and would even come to my office with ideas on how the CIS program can thrive and better serve the students. She’s amazing!”

 While Kaytlyn made her high school career look effortless, she says it was not without its struggles, and that her CIS Site Coordinator played a crucial role in helping her manage it all by providing her with an abundance of resources and always supporting her through difficult decisions.

I knew that I could call Ms. Atkinson day or night and she would answer no matter what she was doing,” said Kaytlyn.  “She goes above and beyond to support her students. The dedication Ms. A has to her role as the East Meck CIS Site Coordinator is clear and can be seen through my success my entire senior year.”

Kaytlyn added that CIS was a huge support for her by serving as an outlet whenever she was feeling stressed or overwhelmed by outside factors such as school, work, or even friends. “Ms. Atkinson’s office has been a safe space for me, and that isn’t something I can say about anywhere else at school,” said Kaytlyn.  “And the number of opportunities I have been given through CIS, including the CIS scholarship, have benefitted me in so many ways.  I’m so grateful that I’ve had such an amazing mentor and Site Coordinator to expose me to each and every one.”

 Kaytlyn is headed to N.C. State University this fall, where she was accepted into the Honors and Scholars program. She plans to study Criminology, and after receiving her bachelor’s degree, she’d like to attend law school and become a criminal prosecutor.

One last comment that Kaytlyn shared highlights what an exceptional person she is – though that was not her intent when she shared this information. Kaytlyn says she struggles with severe anxiety, which at times could be debilitating, especially when preparing for and taking tests and exams. She said that the most valuable piece of advice she is taking with her as she heads to college and out into the world, is something that Ms. Atkinson often said to her:  that “everything I need is already within me.”  

“I often found myself searching for outside sources to help me feel confident in myself, when in reality every tool or ounce of encouragement I have ever needed has been inside of me,” said Kaytlyn. “But it took Ms. A to make me understand that and believe it.” 

 Way to go, Kaytlyn, you have much to be proud of indeed!  Continue to believe in yourself and the sky is the limit!

Kaytlyn on WSOC-TV News

Check out this WSOC-TV News story featuring Kaytlyn and CIS Site Coordinator, Carlea Atkinson!  The story  aired June 22, 2022 in support of our Dine Out For Kids® event.