Tynan Clarke ’11


Oglala, South Dakota


A well-rounded senior at Red Cloud High School, Tynan Clarke has been very active in athletics, academics, as well as many of the after-school clubs and activities offered. Throughout his high school career, Tynan has participated in wrestling and went to the state tournament for cross-country. Tynan was selected by his classmates as one of the very first student ambassadors to represent Red Cloud. He is also a senior representative on the student council. Tynan currently maintains a 3.6 overall grade point average and is the president of the science club.

Among his many accomplishments, Tynan was selected this past summer to participate in the Research Apprentice Program through Upward Bound, where he worked in labs at the University of South Dakota-Vermillion.

Asked and Answered

What is the Research Apprentice Program at Upward Bound?

It is a six-week summer research course that introduces high school students to the laboratory fields. We get to work in labs doing tests and research on a number of different things while also going through a lot of lab presentations. It was really great because we got to work alongside undergrads and graduate students throughout the whole program.

What did you like best about the Research Apprentice Program?

The whole program was fun. It really got me interested in wanting to pursue chemistry as a degree. We got to learn about how research and lab work help people with diabetes, cancer and other diseases. Hopefully with research, they may be able to find a cure for some of these diseases someday.

So what are your plans after you complete high school?

I plan on getting a degree in chemistry or biochemistry from Carthage College so that I can possibly work in a laboratory setting someday. I find it all very interesting and I’m very grateful to Wendell Gehman, my science teacher, for introducing me to the RAP program.

How did you come upon the decision to attend Carthage College?

I was accepted and earned scholarships at Carthage College and Marquette University, but after I looked into both schools a little more I decided that Carthage was the best fit for me. You see, both schools are actually pretty close to one another so it wasn’t really about location. I saw that Marquette had around 20,000 students and Carthage had not even half of that—around 8,000. I already knew that I wanted to attend a smaller school because I just wanted to be able to learn more and to have more one-on-one time with the teachers and in the labs…like we have here at Red Cloud. Both schools are great but I think I will be happier at a smaller school.

You seem to be very active in a variety of clubs at Red Cloud. Why is that and which club would you say is your favorite?

All the clubs at Red Cloud have something to offer. I was in guitar and drum club because I love music and can play those particular instruments. I’m into the rocket club because it’s just fun…we get to build rockets. The same for science club. I find the chess club interesting because we are learning the RPI system while competing against one another. I’m also into films and photography so being apart of the film appreciation club and the photography clubs are just real fun and interesting.

Being a member of the spiritual formation group has given me strength and a place to go. Being a student ambassador and senior representative in the student council are just great opportunities to learn, have fun and represent my school. I enjoy all the clubs and after school activities at Red Cloud because they allow me to stay at school longer. I always have someone to talk to when I need to. I can have fun and see people smile. I would rather be at Red Cloud then at home for my own personal reasons. I get a lot of opportunities to grow by hanging out with people who have the same interests. I just like to stay busy…I don’t think I have a favorite.

What are some of your fondest memories at Red Cloud?

Being with my friends and teachers. I have some of the greatest friends in the world and my teachers have always been real encouraging of me.

Who has had the greatest influence on your life up to this point?

At home, my mom. I wouldn’t be the person who I am today if it weren’t for her. She has five kids but she continuously works hard to be there for each one of us. I don’t think I would be this far in my life if it weren’t for her. I’d also like to say thank you to all of my teachers, especially Benji Horgan, Mike Sunderland and Wendell Gehman. They have all helped me by believing in me and introducing me into the Apprentice Program and the Gates Scholarship. I will never forget the long after school hours that we spent working on this applications and I am very grateful.

Premium Content

This page contains content that is only available to visitors who have logged into our site.

Joining our site is free and only takes a moment (and you have the availability to read even more great stories and articles). If you haven't already, sign up or login in right now to view this page.