Yaya Chavarria helps others on and off the field

You may see Yaya out on the soccer field or running on the track, however there is so much more to this athlete than people may know.

Junior Yaya Chavarria is captain of the varsity girls soccer team in the fall, plays club soccer in Portland during the winter, runs track in the spring, and is a part of the National Honor Society. You may be thinking, ‘how does this girl manage her time?’ Chavarria says, “I have to be fully committed to both sports and school.” She also continues saying “I have to put aside hanging out with friends and other fun activities because school and sports are my priority.” A few tips she has for other student athletes are stay on top of school:“Sometimes you may have to stay home to do work instead of doing something more fun. Also manage your time wisely and plan ahead of time so you know what teachers to talk to or what homework to get.”

Helping and motivating people is something Chavarria does best. “Yaya is a great leader for our team. She is always motivated and works hard,” says teammate Ashlee Ponce. Yaya also puts some of her time helping out in the special education department at the high school. “It all started when I was younger,” she says. “My youngest brother, who has Down Syndrome used to be at OHSU, and I saw how the adults treated all the kids with special needs. I wanted to do the same.” Chavarria says she has a blast hanging out with the kids and enjoys helping them. Her favorite part about helping is knowing the kids are having fun and learning new things. “It makes me really happy and makes me want to keep helping!” she exclaimed.

Chavarria hopes to do some sort of sport in college. “Playing soccer or running track in college is one of my goals!” she says. Chavarria hopes to study hard and become a occupational therapist. “I would be able to do something I enjoy,” she states.

If you haven’t met Yaya, she is definitely a person you would want to get to know. She has such a kind heart and is always up for helping others learn both in sports and in school.

By: Audrey Marble, Talon Staff Reporter

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