Sheri Samson Mineral County High School senior Michael Smith.

Sheri Samson
Mineral County High School senior Michael Smith.

There was no coincidence that the poster Michael Smith posed in front of stated, “The harder I work the more luck I seem to have” which was quoted from Thomas Jefferson. Because this young man is driven by his own solid work habits, he has seen accomplishments fulfilled. Smith hasn’t slowed down his senior year at Mineral County High School as he’s pursued his passion for football, while adding in college courses and he continued to maintain his grades at an above credit standard.

In an outstanding football season, Smith is currently on record with 22 rushing touchdowns and earned 1,006 yards, which he humbly credits to a best friend and mentor named Tristin Reynolds.

“I was in my sophomore year when my best friend challenged me to push past my limits and be the best that I could be. I had my mother, Christina Holloway as my constant cheerleader who was in my corner, but coming from a peer it made it more worthwhile. He told me I could play excellent football, so I realized I wasn’t this average, chubby kid from fifth grade anymore and I could invent myself into whatever I wanted to be. From that point on I made it a point to do my best at everything – even with card tricks.” Smith was known for sharing his magic with students and staff members at the high school.

With a football season that made his senior year shine, Smith narrowed down his sights for a college degree in criminal justice, specifically to work in the detective field someday. With his admitted propensity toward figuring out the truth and his logical mind for details, he weighed many options before focusing in on one career. As Smith looks forward to attending the police academy someday, he knows that this line of work will always involve helping people out, which is a trait he embraces in his life today.

“You can’t let your circumstances define who you are. I was raised mainly by my grandparents until I came to Hawthorne to live with my single mom at the age of ten, which some may look at as a struggle, but for me I’m grateful. I’m the oldest of eight kids – two of us live here, but the rest are in California with my dad. One brother died before he turned one. Sadly I never met him, but knowing the other little ones taught me patience toward small kids.”

Smith is busy saving money while working as a manager at McDonalds and applying for scholarships, while sending his profile out to college coaches. Smiths’ goal is to obtain as much financial help as possible, while pushing from his end to make sure his future is secure.

“This senior year is nothing like I thought it would be. As the year is winding down, you are gearing up for college admissions. I’ve tried to prepare myself for my future and I’ve had guidance to do that.”

While Smith’s friend graduated last year, he gained insight from Reynolds regarding his last year in high school. He is focused on working out daily and stays healthy in his free time, while remaining diligent about his career path and his future school decisions.