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Cecelia G photo by James Patten HSN
Cecelia Guilmette plays soccer (above), throws shot put (center), and much more at High School North. She recently even read 77 books in 16 months (right). The sophomore, however, has her own story to tell, too.

Cecelia Guilmette photo shot put HSN

Cecelia Guilmette with books

'I shall either find a way or make one'

Jan. 30, 2024-- To say that High School North sophomore Cecelia Guilmette is "all in" is extremely accurate, literally and figuratively. But it also might be underselling her just a bit.

Cecelia-- most know her as Cece-- is a goalie for the Mariners girls soccer team, as well as regional and national squads for Match Fit Academy (MFA). She throws javelin, shot put, and discus, and runs for the school's winter and spring track and field teams. An honors and advanced honors student, Cecelia also dabbles in photography. And again, "dabbles" might be underselling it, too; this past spring, she was recognized for winning the New Jersey Technical Student Association (NJTSA) state prize for photography, and her work is highlighted on her photo-based Instagram account and utilized for her role as photographer and editor of the yearbook. About NJTSA; Cecelia is president of her local chapter, because of course she is, and has doubled its participation rate since last year, because of course she has.

Cecelia Yearbook Crew High School North

What else? Oh, she is a leader representing New Jersey for Be Strong, a cohort of young people dedicated to strengthening mental and emotional health, and-- obviously-- she's All In, an organization dedicated to promoting the resilience and effort of student athletes.

Cecelia recently shared her own story of resilience in a post published by All In on Instagram.

"In December of 2020, my car was hit by a drunk driver from behind while we were stopped," she wrote. "The accident resulted in me having a compression fracture on my spine and a syrinx ... I have to live with this for the rest of my life now."

The accident limited her in what she was able to do on the soccer field, but that hasn't stopped Cecelia from working to improve, or hampered her love for the game.

"I am still limited in my game and practice situations when I need to do something I can't, but I make it work," she wrote. "I also needed to change my mindset to realize I can't be the same keeper I was before, but if I adjust I could be better or almost 100%."

Her involvement and dedication are inspiring in their own right, but Cecelia's remarkable resilience in the face of adversity deserves to be recognized and celebrated.

For her All In spotlight, the post leads with a quote that defines Cecelia's approach: "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," Latin for "I shall either find a way or make one." She has indeed found a way, and continues to do so. How her academic and athletic careers at High School North progress, particularly in light of her ongoing physical recovery, remains to be seen, but there's no doubt that everyone at the school-- those who know her as Cece, especially-- are happy to have her.

She's a keeper, after all.