Michael Harris is a member of so many clubs at Marcus High School that he has even considered starting a few of his own.
A member of the Debate Honor Society, the Math Honor Society, the Science Honor Society, Students Making Other Students Smile Club (or SMOSS), and the Philosophy Club, the MHS rising senior said he has to be organized to do all that he does.
“I am mostly able to do and balance everything successfully through prioritizing,” Harris said. “I don’t want to be valedictorian, so I don’t worry that much about my grades. I make sure that I’m in the top 10 percent, but otherwise I really don’t care about grades.
“I enjoy volunteering, and take any opportunities that arise. I also spend much of time preparing for debate and doing debate drills (about two hours a day through each week). I’ve also found that since I enjoy being with friends and being intellectually stimulated more than television, I’ve spent more of my time off the couch than on it.”
While Harris may not care as much about grades as he does about being involved, he still has a 3.7 unweighted grade point average and is ranked 78th in his class.
Harris said he likes debate in particular, and said that he believes it has helped him develop as a person.
“I enjoy debate for several reasons,” Harris said. “It challenges me on a level of critical thinking that no one other activity or class in high school has done, and the other debaters in the class are not only my good friends, but also create an atmosphere of intellectual enrichment that- although it may make me feel stupid at times- is always allowing me to learn new lessons and understand concepts.”
Harris said that his three years at Marcus has been very special for him.
“The friends and the teachers I have had were and are invaluable,” Harris said. “When I originally arrived at Marcus as a fish, I was extremely depressed. I had just moved here and lost many friends. However, the environment was so welcoming, especially in my first period debate class, that I’ve grown to love the school and the people in it.”
Harris is not completely decided on college yet, but said he is leaning toward the University of Chicago to study law, and has recently looked into the process of developing some new organizations at the school, among which would be a Hackey Sack Club.