For Lauren Lucas, remaining busy has been a major part of her life.
After four years in the elementary education program and as a member of the Boise State cross country and track and field teams, Lucas was announced as a Top 10 Scholar for the Class of 2014 earlier this month — the ultimate pay-off for her hard work.
“I’m very very thankful for it, but this wasn’t even something I knew was possible, to be honest,” Lucas said. “I didn’t realize how much I actually wanted it until I won it.”
The Top 10 Scholar recognition is awarded to students with a minimum of a 3.8 GPA, and based off of nominations and an accreditation packet submitted to the dean of their college.
During the fall cross country season, an average day for Lucas began at 5 a.m. She completed a 10 mile run in the Boise foothills with her teammates before she began her student teaching at Jefferson Elementary School at 7:30 in the morning.
Lucas would remain at Jefferson until 4:45 in the afternoon, student teaching second grade classroom. After Lucas fulfilled her responsibilities student teaching she would begin her second workout of the day with weight exercises.
With the added hassle of traveling for cross country meets, Lucas found herself constantly on the move, rarely finding time at home.
“I was just tired. There wasn’t a lot to do, it was just my body was run down,” Lucas said.
Despite the hours Lucas spent on the road traveling or inside a classroom, Lucas enjoyed every minute of the constant movement, preferring to stay busy.
“I like to be busy,” Lucas said. “I would rather be busy than not doing anything. I drive myself crazy without a lot going on.”
Lucas’s endeavors in running and student teaching are coupled with being a member of the Boise State Honors College, a program that required her to be present for several events, as well as added papers to write and presentations to give — all of this added to her already full schedule.
Her schedule lightened up in the spring, however, when a hip injury was discovered after the fall season.
After months of not knowing what was causing the pain in her hips, an MRI and X-ray informed Lucas of a bone deformity that caused a tear in the cartilage which effectively ended her senior season.
With her season over and requiring surgery, Lucas could no longer participate in an activity that brought her enjoyment. This threw a wrench in her plans of graduating in four years, as well as finishing her eligibility in four years.
With her injury however, Lucas found more time and energy to put into teaching — something she believes goes hand in hand with running.
“Running has definitely played a role in my life and wanting to teach,” Lucas said. “You don’t get a lot of recognition with running. It’s a lot of on your own stuff. With teaching, it’s appreciated, but you don’t get a lot of recognition for it.”
After graduation, Lucas hopes to work in an elementary school classroom, preferably in the Boise area, while remaining close to the sport of running as a coach.