Meet Alliyah Hunnicutt '23! Alliyah is very involved in the Rabun Gap community. She is an outstanding student, a prefect, is involved in our dance program, a member of the choir, and in the culinary club and women's empowerment club. Alliyah is a day student from Rabun Gap, GA and has been at Rabun Gap since the fifth grade.
Why did you choose to attend Rabun Gap?
Rabun Gap is a school that I have always looked forward to going to since I was a little girl. When I was younger I would always call it “That school on the big hill”. I could just see myself walking on that sidewalk everyday wearing my light up knee high converse (which were super cool at the time). Not only did I see it as a big, beautiful campus, but also as a place for opportunity. I believe that there is so much opportunity to advance, succeed, and try new things here.
What makes Rabun Gap special to you?
Rabun Gap is special to me because it is a community where I feel safe and appreciated. I know that no matter what I do, there will always be someone around the corner to help guide, or celebrate with me. Not only do I feel safe to be me, but I also feel secure. Knowing that if I leave my watch in a classroom, and it will be there the next day is something so special about Rabun Gap. It is a huge stress reliever to know that me and my things are safe here, when anywhere else in the world it wouldn't be the same.
What is your favorite memory from Rabun Gap?
My favorite memory would definitely have to be my freshman class experience. The first day of the experience, we split into groups and did different community service activities around campus. My group's job was to clean up the outside of the middle school dorm. Me, Rebekah, and Norah weeded the garden, and spread pine straw. We later found out that we were actually pulling up Aunt Connie's flowers, and not weeds! At the end of the day Aunt Connie gave us treats for our so-called "hard work". The next day all the freshmen just got to hang out at the lake and have a blast, it was definitely a great way to start off my high school experience!
Tell us about the dance program.
The dance program at Rabun Gap is absolutely amazing! It's such a great opportunity to be able to dance during the school day as a class. I have learned so much about myself, my peers, and dance through this program. It truly is amazing to see how much my friends and I have grown since we started dancing. I have such a fun time dancing, laughing and performing with all of my friends.
What is it like being a prefect?
Being a prefect is something that I will never forget. The feeling of coming to school knowing that you are someone that anyone can come to for anything is a surreal experience. It makes me happy to know that I was chosen to be a representative of Rabun Gap. I'm so glad I got the opportunity to become perfect, even if it's hard work, and I wouldn't change it for anything.
What is your favorite class and why?
I honestly really enjoy all of the classes that I'm in, but I would have to say that Special topics in science is my favorite class right now. I really enjoy science, and this class is so easy to stay engaged in. We do a bunch of labs on really interesting topics. We recently did a lab on what the effects of talking while performing an experiment can be.
Which Rabun Gap teachers and/or coaches have had the biggest impact on you during your time here?
I would say Mr.Noff, Mrs.Heidi, and Mr.Nowack have had the biggest impact on me. Of course, all of my teachers have left an imprint on me in their own way, shoutout Mrs. Greener for helping me ace that AP exam. But, Mr. Noff and Mrs. Heidi are people that I know I can always go talk to no matter what. I have always loved to just drop by his office and exchange a few laughs and words whenever I have some free time, and it was nice because he was never too busy to chat with me. I really appreciate how he has always made me feel welcomed and important. I knew since the day I came t Rabun Gap that Mrs. Heidi and I were going to get along. She has never failed to make me feel loved, and most importantly taught me that I am perfect just the way I am. Mr. Nowack has been around since my middle school days. In middle school I went through a lot, and he had my back through my whole journey. He made me feel safe, and I will never forget how the little interactions we had each morning made me feel wanted and ready for the day.
You have been a student here since the fifth grade. What advice would you give another student who is interested in attending Rabun Gap?
My advice to another student would be to just really cherish and appreciate your time here. I know it doesn't seem like it but time really does fly by. I know that sometimes it seems like there's a lot of work, and Rabun Gap is overwhelming, but you'll get through it, I promise. There's always someone to help you with anything you need, whether you are struggling academically, physically, or mentally. There is never a time where you have to struggle alone.
Which interests do you pursue outside of the classroom?
I really like to bake, do gymnastics, hangout with friends, and spend time doing anything outside. Most of my interests are pretty self explanatory, but I think it's really important for my mental health to spend time outside. Even if I'm having a really bad day, I know that feeling the sun beam onto my skin, and that crisp fall breeze is an immediate serotonin booster.