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Difficult decisions ahead: Murray Hughes

FRI. | 02-11-22 | FEATURES

     Throughout one’s four years of high school, situations may come up where difficult decisions must be made. Rose sophomore Murray Hughes found himself in a situation like this when he learned that the competitions for Science Olympiad and Mock Trial would occur on the same day.

     Hughes’ father is a chemistry professor, so he has always encouraged Hughes to get involved in the sciences as much as he can, which is the reason he began participating in Science Olympiad. 

     “I’ve been doing Science Olympiad since I was in the third grade,” Hughes said. “[Science Olympiad] teaches you to have a deep appreciation for science; it also introduces you to a multitude of scientific disciplines.”

     Hughes has been participating in Mock Trial since his freshman year after hearing about the benefits of joining from other students.

    “I heard about [Mock Trial] from people who went to Rose and it sounded fun, and they always said Mrs. Knight was a really great teacher,” Hughes said. “Mock Trial helps you learn about how a courtroom works, but it also helps your public speaking skills and teaches you how to effectively make points.”

     Hughes enjoys his involvement in both Science Olympiad and Mock Trial. Between the two, Hughes does not have a favorite as they differ so much.

     “Mock Trial deals more with reading and writing, and Science Olympiad deals more with science,” Hughes said.

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Photo contributed by Murray Hughes

     In early January, Hughes learned that he would need to make a choice between Science Olympiad and Mock Trial because the competitions for both would be held on the same day.

     “At first I was like ‘I don’t know what I’m going to do’, so I had to sit and think on it for a day or two,” Hughes said.

     After talking to a few other students who were in the same situation that he was in and taking some time to think it over, Hughes decided to continue on with Mock Trial.

     “Mock Trial is kind of like putting on a play except we don’t have understudies,” Hughes said. “We have very important roles on our teams so it would be pretty awful to just leave [my] team like that.”

     While Hughes wishes he could participate in both events, he had to make the smartest decision that benefitted the most people.

     “Usually [in Science Olympiad], you work with another person on an event so there's another person who can compete for that event,” Hughes said. “But when you’re on a Mock Trial team, each person, no matter what your role is, [plays] a very integral role for your team and if you suddenly have to leave, it would destroy your team.”

    Hughes believes he has made the best decision, but he regrets that he won’t be able to compete for Science Olympiad.

     “I felt really bad about leaving since that is something I’ve put time into and worked really hard on,” Hughes said. “I felt like I was letting people down.”

    Hughes doesn’t look at this situation negatively. Instead, he looks back on what he could have done differently to make this decision process easier for himself.

    “I think sometimes you just have to do what you have to do,” Hughes said. “I probably should have been more proactive and checked the exact competition dates because I knew they were in the same month.”

    While Hughes did not enjoy having to pick between two things he loves and enjoys, he does believe it taught him a lesson about making decisions.

    “It has taught me how to effectively weigh decisions and really gave me perspective on how valuable you are to a team,” Hughes said.

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