Senior Profile: Molly Meere: Tenderhearted Strength

Molly Meere was four years old when she first walked into Mrs. Shedd’s kindergarten class at Ad Fontes Academy 13 years ago.

“I remember being very nervous!” says Molly, who graduates this June with the unique distinction of having spent her entire K-12 education at AFA. She is the second AFA student to accomplish this.

Today the confident, well-spoken student leader and award-winning mock trial team co-captain says she is thankful for an education that has stretched her and encouraged her walk with Christ.

“I feel like I’ve grown in my relationship with Christ,” she says. “Something great that AFA does is equip you with knowledge of the words of Scripture.”

“I think classical education is really beneficial and I don’t think I fully understood that until this year,” she adds. “This year I’ve been able to look back and see how everything fell into place—from the grammar stage where we learned parts of speech—to the logic and rhetoric stages where we learned to apply what we’d been taught.”

Always one to rise to the challenge, Molly has received both magna cum laude and cum laude honors, but her academic success hasn’t come without a lot of hard work.

“I love reading and analyzing literature, but I remember reading being a big struggle at first,” she says. “I had no clue what the letters meant.”

But by persevering not only did Molly become an avid reader and lover of literature, (her senior thesis is entitled “Setting a Standard for a Film Adaptation of a Literary Classic”), but she also realized that her favorite classes have been the most difficult ones.

“My favorite classes have always been the classes Mrs. [Linda] Mathwin teaches, Classical Composition in the 7th grade and Rhetoric and Great Books this year,” she says. “Even though her classes are the hardest and most challenging classes for me, I feel I’ve learned the most from her and have really developed my speaking and writing skills.”

She’s further sharpened her speaking skills as a member of AFA’s mock trial team, first as a prosecution witness and later as a defense attorney and team co-captain. In her four years on the team Molly says she’s “loved playing the part of the witness and sitting on cross examination. I also loved delivering the closing argument as a defense lawyer during my junior and senior years.” This year her performance earned her an honorable mention while last year she won the Fifth Best Attorney in Virginia Award.

“She doesn’t strive to do anything just mediocre,” says AFA Mock Trial Coach Kerry Lockhart. “She has a strong work ethic and a sense of dedication. Intellectually she’s very curious and always seeks to confirm her knowledge and gain insights. She’s adept at taking academic material and synthesizing it into concepts, ideas and applications. She’s also really good at working with other team members when she sees weaknesses that can be strengthened.”

Molly says she is thankful for teachers and coaches who have consistently held her to high standards. “Mr. Lockhart and Mrs. Mathwin push you to be great,” she says. “They want you to be excellent.”

But despite her passions for literature and the law, it is the field of nursing that Molly feels most drawn to.

“I love the versatility found in a nursing career,” says Molly, who plans to attend Marymount University in Arlington, Virginia, on a scholarship and pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. “Most importantly, I’m excited to be able to serve others and honor Christ through that service.”

It is her heart for serving others that is perhaps what Molly is best known for at Ad Fontes.

“One of her nicknames among the seniors is ‘St. Molly’ simply because of her humble, gentle, kind-hearted and giving nature,” says Lockhart.

“She is overwhelmingly kind and generous to all around her, and models exceptional integrity, work ethic, and commitment to excellence,” says AFA President Dean Luckenbaugh. “She has grown to be a confident, loving, diligent, and engaging young person.”

In her leadership role as House Head of Rome Mr. Luckenbaugh described Molly as a gifted servant leader who strives to make each person in a group feel valued and included.

“This is my first year as House Head and it’s my favorite thing!” says Molly. “The students in Rome are the best, most fun group of people, and I feel so blessed to be able to serve them. Initially, I was nervous that being a leader was an unachievable task, but this year has been great!”

Asked if she has a favorite verse or passage of Scripture Molly readily quotes Jeremiah 29:11. “It says, ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord. ‘Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a future and a hope,'” she says. “It’s always nice to know that God is in control and He knows where He’s sending you so you don’t have to worry too much.”
No one worries that, whether Molly ultimately decides to pursue nursing or another career, she will not fail to truly bless and enrich the lives of those she meets. For the students, teachers, and families at Ad Fontes Academy fortunate enough to know her, she already has.