Sometimes the workload can grow overwhelming, but Cumberland Valley High School senior Holden Zimmerman said he likes that, because he gets better under pressure.
“Sometimes the price is staying up late and getting things done,” he said. “Being busy outside of school, it’s really good for me because it’s training me in a sense. I seem to do better when I’m busy, so I try to keep myself busy.”
Outside of the classroom, where the 17-year-old manages to swing a GPA of 100.76, good for 45th in his class, Zimmerman is the varsity captain of Cumberland Valley’s boys’ soccer team. He also plays the electric bass in the school’s jazz band.
Holden, the son of Eric and Kathleen Zimmerman, said that while he doesn’t see music as a career, it’s “a passion of mine and I’m going to continue to play throughout my life.” The love for music was passed down from Zimmerman’s father, who used to play in a band, he said.
He’s taking after both of his parents though, for he hopes to follow in his mother’s footsteps and enter the medical field one day.
So far, he’s applied to New York University, Penn State University, the University of Virginia and Villanova University. Afterward, Zimmerman said he hopes to attend medical school.
“I want to be a doctor, or something in the medical field, so I know down the road it’s going to take a lot of hard work to get there,” he said. “My mom is a doctor and she inspires me. I’m hoping to be something like her, so if I can get the work ethic down now, that’s just good practice for later.”
His school counselor, Kimberly Clements, believes that Zimmerman’s goals are very tangible.
“I simply cannot say enough good things about Holden Zimmerman,” she said. “His desire to someday become a physician is well within his grasp. He will be a huge asset to his future college as well.”
Outside of school, Zimmerman is your run-of-the-mill teenager — at least, when he has the time to be. He enjoys socializing with his friends as much as anyone his age, and said that he and his friends are all on the same page when it comes to life and academics. He said that in his circle of friends, “everyone is equal.”
“My dad taught me to work hard and then have fun, so that’s one of the reasons I’m able to get my work done,” Zimmerman said. “When I come home from school, I just work and get things done so I’m able to do other things.”
John Brenneman taught Zimmerman in his AP chemistry course last year, and has only good things to say about the stand-out.
“The characteristic of Holden that stands out most to me is his intelligence,” he wrote in a letter of recommendation. “He quickly picks up on concepts whether they be presented to him in a class lecture or a textbook reading assignment.”
He concluded later in the letter that “Holden is a mature young man who has a strong desire to succeed.”