An Abundance of Activity! Senior Annabelle Ink’s Many Extracurriculars

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Macallister Graves

Senior Annabelle Ink is no stranger to extracurricular activities. In fact, her schedule is a blend between school work and a multitude of clubs, both in school and out. Ink, recognized for her efforts in business coursework, also participates in many activities on and off campus, ranging from personal projects to volunteer efforts.
“This school year, honestly, I’d like to rearrange my priorities a little bit, so things like piano and my business that are more of my own terms,” Ink said. “I just kind of take breaks from when I need to focus on school and school organizations, and things that I have official positions in that I actually have obligations for and that other people are affected by.”
One of Ink’s biggest commitments is DECA, a non-profit organization with clubs in different high schools throughout different countries. The organization aims to teach upcoming business students skills needed to overcome challenges, and get ahead in their careers. Ink, who joined as a freshman, currently holds the position of chapter president and the Hawaii state vice president. DECA-related responsibilities are particularly time-consuming for Ink, especially during competition season, which lasts December through February. In 2020, Ink and her partner won first place overall in the Financial Services category, qualifying them for the International Career and Development Conference, which was canceled due to COVID. Ink also received the highest written exam score for the Financial Services category. The next year, Ink and her partner won first place and qualified for the international conference again. Ink also received the highest written exam score.
Along with DECA, Ink is also currently interning with the Trojan Trading Post. The Business Core Pathway class advisor offered the opportunity to work under the school alongside other contributors to the event. As an intern, Ink does inventory and helps with preparations for the upcoming store.
“Honestly, when I first entered high school my dream was to open a bakery, that was like my dream job, so I decided to just do it, which is why I have a home bakery now,” Ink said.
In her junior year, Ink opened an online baking business called MySweetestTooth, where she sells custom iced cookies and other desserts. Before MySweetestTooth became an official business, it began as a blog for her to write about her recipes and creations, although her unfamiliarity with search engine optimization garnered little attention toward the website. Ink originally sold baked goods casually before officially registering her business as a sole proprietorship in December 2020.
Nevertheless, she still enjoyed the writing process behind her blog posts, finding it even more satisfying than baking her products. Currently, she is taking a break from her business to focus on college applications instead.
“I don’t love it, a lot of my extracurriculars are based around business, and I do enjoy it and think it’s useful, but I actually also really enjoy writing, and so, I’m thinking I’m going to pursue English after high school, so I regret not doing journalism,” Ink said.
Ink is a content creator and tutor for Empowering Youth in Business, an online organization she found while looking for intern opportunities. Empowering Youth in Business is student-led and founded by high schoolers, promoted as a way for kids to learn about the field of business. As a part of this organization, Ink occasionally creates lesson plans, focusing mostly on marketing and entrepreneurship for kids all throughout the US, ranging from kindergarten through eighth grade.
A similar activity Ink is involved in is Live Your Dream, a non-profit and mainland-based organization that she writes lifestyle articles for. The blog is run by advisors who send emails to staff or volunteer writers roughly each month regarding certain topics the advisors need help writing with. As a volunteer writer, Ink has written about teenagers in quarantine and what they can do to be productive, as well as the quarantine itself.
Ink, also a co-president of the girl advisor panel with the Girl Scouts, meets once a month to plan service projects and other activities for girls across the state. Under the Girl Scouts program, Ink created an online platform called Girl Business Network, where she connects with teenage entrepreneurs around the world, and provides advice from knowledge of her business courses during high school. Currently, the Girl Scouts are planning a service project with a humane society to work with their ownerless cats, hoping to get girls to volunteer and help out with the animals.
“I focus on business, so I am interested in entrepreneurship more than the rest of business and I think business skills overall can be applied to a lot of different fields, which is why I’m
interested in studying it now and learning more about it,” Ink said.
Ink also serves as the vice president and co-founder of the MHS Feminist Club. The club, created this year, focuses on promoting a space for students to discuss various topics related to feminism and women in the workforce.
She also plays piano, though recreationally now. Ink used to test for national exams from eighth grade through sophomore year. Because she does not test anymore, and never competed, Ink said she figured her time would be better spent on other extracurricular activities she felt were more significant.
“I do kind of regret doing that, because I think the main reason I stopped was because I thought it wouldn’t look good on my resume, but then I realized, it doesn’t really matter if it looks good on your resume, it was just something I enjoyed, so I should have pursued it more,” Ink said.
Ink believes that her extracurriculars have contributed heavily to her confidence, her ability to speak in public, and helping her gain other important skills. She thinks they have helped her grow as both a leader and a person.
“I’m still a shy person, I’ve always been kinda shy, but when I was a freshman I was very shy, and I did not speak at all, ever, and I was just always very nervous and afraid to put myself in
leadership positions, but now I still don’t really like public speaking, but I do like to lead other people, and to help, that aspect,” Ink said.
Ink’s business, MySweetestTooth, can be found through https://mysweetesttooth583480148.wordpress.com/. Girl Business Network has a youtube channel, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZxpN-A8oIKPvV_JUJdBrbw, and a website, https://www.girlbusinessnetwork.org/home. The Feminist Club can be reached at P-15, and the advisor can be contacted through email at Kimberly[email protected]