• Mollie Simon
  • Chamblee Charter High School, senior
Mollie Simon

There’s quite a bit to say about Mollie Simon. She’s president of Chamblee’s Technology Student Association, co-editor of her school’s newspaper and practiced in Aikido, a Japanese defensive martial art.

Mollie has been broadening her horizons and learning new skills for years. In eighth grade, she started taking classes in Aikido.

Aikido, translated roughly as “the way of the harmonious spirit,” is a defensive martial art that originated in Japan in the early 1900s. The form focuses on grappling and on softness: In other words, it is a style that emphasizes dispatching an attacker rather than attacking someone else.

“It’s all about responding to attacks,” Mollie said.

Though Mollie has not been focusing as intently on Aikido in recent years, she most certainly has not slacked off. She has been working on Chamblee Charter High School’s Technology Student Association, an organization that meets weekly. She is currently its president.

She’s worked with the association since her freshman year. The organization challenges students to compete in various events, from engineering and writing to debate, public speaking and even fashion design.

Mollie has attended the Tech Day and State Conference in Athens, Ga., and a couple of international conferences – one in Orlando, Fla., and the other in Dallas, Texas. At one conference, Mollie and a friend won a first-place prize by developing a customizable travel bag.

“I had actually wanted to go into journalism instead,” Mollie noted, “but as a freshman, [under school rules] I couldn’t do that. I ended up picking the association, and I’ve stuck with it ever since.”

That in no way means that Mollie has given up on pursuing a career in journalism. She works as an intern with Reporter Newspapers. And she is co-editor of Chamblee’s school newspaper, “The Blue & Gold.”

Mollie recently attended the Al Neuharth Free Spirit Journalism Conference in Washington D.C., as a representative of the state of Georgia. The conference, named for the founder of USA Today, is designed to encourage and inspire future journalists. Mollie was one of 51 rising seniors to attend.

What’s Next:

Mollie hasn’t settled on a college yet, but believes she’d like to pursue a career in journalism. She is also looking into marketing the customizable bag that won her and her partner first place at one of the Technology Student Association’s International Conferences.

This article was prepared by Blake Flournoy, a student at Riverwood International Charter School.