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Grovetown STAR Student aims to change international justice system

Posted: March 5, 2014 - 1:12am
Grovetown High School STAR student Katie Trimm selected her band instructor, Brian Toney, as her STAR teacher.   Photo by Jim Blaylock
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Grovetown High School STAR student Katie Trimm selected her band instructor, Brian Toney, as her STAR teacher.

Katie Trimm stays busy. The Grovetown High School senior has a long list of extracurricular activities and academic accolades on her college applications to prove it.

Now, the 17-year-old can add Grovetown High STAR Student to that list. She got the honor by earning a 2160 out of 2400 on her SAT exam.

“I love what I do,” Trimm said, adding that the groups she’s active in are not just résumé boosters but things she’s passionate about. “That’s why I do it.”

Trimm, a trumpet player and drum major in the Grovetown Band of Warriors, chose band director Brian Toney as her STAR Teacher.

“Mr. Toney has always been really, really supportive of me,” Trimm said. “He basically has told me, ‘Yes, you can do whatever you want as long as it doesn’t interfere with band.’

“I’ve been blessed with support from all these other teachers, but it’s like Mr. Toney is exponentially greater than that.”

Toney said it was an honor to be named STAR Teacher, his first time.

Trimm, he said, is a self-motivated person who has great ability.

“She’s probably the most driven student I’ve had in a long time,” Toney said. “She sets goals that she’s able to work toward and almost always achieves.”

Trimm has a lofty career goal as well, one she said she often gets a negative response to.

“I’d eventually like to be a defense attorney in the (International Criminal Court) and I’d like to defend war criminals,” Trimm said.

While involved with Model UN, Trimm said she was pushed into becoming a leader in the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. In the real UN, the OIC consists of 57 nations centered around the Middle East and northern Africa who aim to be the collective voice of the Islamic world.

“I absolutely love it,” Trimm said. “I love everything about teaching people Islam, teaching them about the Arab-Persian Divide. I loved it.”

Trimm said during her studies of the area, she discovered a lot of stereotypes and generalizations about the region, extending into the ICC.

She’s not trying to make a statement on Middle East politics, current events or the United States’ involvement in the area with her career aspirations. She simply believes in the American ideas of justice and being presumed innocent until proven guilty and wants to break down those stereotypes and ensure each person charged is given a fair trial.

‘‘Being raised in America, we learned this innocent-before-proven-guilty thing,” Trimm said. “That’s not in other countries. I think that’s a really important statute of the justice system that should exist globally.

“I’m one of those people who wants to be a lawyer and wants to have a bad record. Because, ideally, if the justice system works, then I’m defending an actual war criminal. Then I should have a bad record. And I am so okay with that.”

Trimm said she loves music and hopes to be able to incorporate music into her college studies. She plans to concentrate on modern Middle Eastern studies.

She’s gotten a “likely letter” from Yale University. The letter means if Trimm maintains her academic and moral standing, she’ll receive an official letter of admission after April 1.

“It’s exciting,” Trimm said of attending Yale. “It’s definitely a dream.”

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