What Is A Cavalier? As told by Patricia Passwaters

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Karla Santoyo and Sabrina Ochoa

As of 1950, Coral Gables Senior High School has been molding its students into model citizens who go by the name of Cavaliers. Throughout the generations, the definition of a Cavalier has evolved. Notably, senior Patricia Passwaters has learned the meaning first hand.

Walking through the immaculate crimson gates as a freshman, Passwaters had already envisioned her ideal high school experience of becoming Student Council President. Upon meeting Principal Costa, she immediately mentioned her goal. Being a Cavalier legacy, she was certain she belonged at Gables.

“The transition from middle to high school was a little overwhelming, but on my first day on campus I felt the spirit of being a Cavalier all around me and couldn’t wait till I was adjusted enough to have the same feeling,” Passwaters said.

A Cavalier isn’t just the Coral Gables’ mascot. A Cavalier is that person proud to show their school colors: crimson and gray. A Cavalier is that person you find spread out in various clubs and extracurricular activities; the type of person that is not just a member, but a leader, one who takes initiative. That type of person who perseveres in every endeavor; the person who dreams of the impossible and does everything within their aptitude to achieve it. A Cavalier is someone who never misses a single sporting event and departs with a slight case of laryngitis. A Cavalier is a role model; one who impacts their community and continues to display such characteristics even after they receive their diploma.

“I don’t feel like people learn how to be Cavaliers. On the contrary, being a Cavalier is something that comes from within you; you either have it or you don’t. As a senior reflecting on all the time I have spent in school, I can honestly say that Gables has taught me so much and that I will forever be grateful. It has taught me perseverance after countless hours spent in my extracurricular activities, dedication after never giving up when the going gets tough and allowed me to share my passion with classmates by getting involved in everything I love, and most important it has taught me selflessness through my active role of serving the community and the student body,” Passwaters said.

Passwaters has attended CGHS for all four years of high school in the CAF&DM (Communications, Arts, Film, and Digital Media) Academy. Balancing school work while being involved in the Gables community, she has remained on the Honor Roll and become a part of various clubs. Unlike most students, who dedicate a plethora of hours practicing their desired sport, Patricia Passwaters is not the athletic kind. However, she compensates by being a member of NHS, Interact, Student Activities, and holding various leadership positions in journalism programs. At the start of her high school career, Passwaters joined the Yearbook Staff and later became Managing Editor; that same year she was named Managing Editor of Catharsis. Currently, she is Editor-in-Chief of CavsConnect (the online newspaper), Managing Editor of Catharsis (the literary magazine), President of Quill & Scroll (the journalism honor society) and Treasurer of the Creative Writing Club. In addition, Patricia Passwaters has embraced the position of Student Council President as she organizes and plans activities for the entire Cavalier Nation.

“It’s hard to say what has made me such a passionate Cavalier because I feel like it’s always been inside of me. Becoming involved just demonstrated the passion I have for Gables. I love representing Gables and the student body in and out of the school. My role as Editor-in-Chief of CavsConnect, as Student Council President, and all the other positions I hold make me passionate about serving the student body,” Passwaters said.

Due to Gables being her second home, Passwaters has led by example, breaking through any obstacles in her way. She exemplifies the characteristics of a Cavalier: leadership, dedication, initiative, and pride. As a future Gator, Patricia Passwaters is foreseen to continually strive for success. With passion and drive, Passwaters has not only achieved her goals, but has exceeded her own expectations, earning the title of a Cavalier.