There are pivotal moments in the rapid growth of adolescents, where character is revealed and their future plans could very well present themselves, long before their purpose is explained. Flash back 5 years ago to the peak of Mount Whitney, the tallest mountain in the continental United States, and there, standing on top, is a 12 year-old Melaina Hissam who is ready to take on the world. It was at that moment, athletics would never be too far from a conversation involving Melaina and whichever path she took, would prove be a successful one. Beginning shortly after her descent, Melaina started playing volleyball and has not stopped since. This Bob Jones High School senior has been a permanent fixture on the Lady Patriots team roster since her freshman year. She has played on both her school and travel volleyball teams. She helped guide the Bob Jones Lady Patriots to the 6A State Championship last season and was recognized for the outstanding leadership and team spirit she displays to her team as their lead defensive player. When not on the court, you can find Melaina enjoying a long distance run, as she participates in many races throughout the year. In the classroom, Melaina’s desire to learn fuels her to achieve greatness at Bob Jones. To date, she has accumulated a 4.6 grade point average and has scored a robust 32 on her ACT’s. Melaina was chosen as the sole representative from Bob Jones High School to participate in a Biotechnology Academy held at Hudson-Alpha Institute for Biotechnology over the summer. This academy exposes high school students to the many areas of biotechnology. When Melaina isn’t learning the foundations of molecular genetics, you can find her actively involved with the National, Math and Science honor Societies. In her community, Melaina is active with the area chapter of FCA, has organized and arranged multiple fund raising projects and continues to share her love of science by volunteering at Sci-Quest. Congratulations, Melaina!