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SPS United: Meet TJ Hill, senior at Parkview High School

Dec. 6, 2023


"Basketball has been the center of my life since I was a kid. So, growing up, I even thought of myself as a basketball player. I’m still focused on basketball, especially throughout this year, but I’m shying away from just being a basketball player. I want to be remembered not just as a basketball player, but also as a good student and person who encouraged others to make an impact on the people around them. 

A couple of weeks before school started, I was a part of the Youth Civic Leadership Access Institute. And as part of our project, we got to meet with different nonprofits and organizations. Specifically, with Harmony House. When they don’t have meals delivered to their residents, they’ll eat things like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for dinner. That stuck with me, and I wanted to help.

So, with my Leadership project in Leadership 401, which is our senior year class at Parkview, we get an opportunity to address a problem in our community. So I’m trying to address food quality in the community, so I’m partnering with a couple of different nonprofit organizations to deliver home-cooked meals to nonprofits to ensure those who are connected to those nonprofits have better food quality. The project is called Serving Up Hope. My goal is to work with three different organizations -- Harmony House, Safe to Sleep and The Kitchen -- and deliver meals for each nonprofit at least once, hopefully 40 meals at a time. There’s something about a home-cooked meal that does more than make you feel good.

My drive to lead has come from the people around me. Coming into high school, I wasn’t necessarily the most confident about myself or my abilities. My parents, my coaches and my friends have always told me that I’m a leader, I'm compassionate, and I care about others. Hearing that over and over motivates me to make an impact on my community and the world if possible.

I think that the transition from high school to a bigger life is exciting. Being able to plan out what comes next; it’s a scary road, but it’s exciting. Seeing all these opportunities for leadership positions and basketball and how they all come together to lead up to a new life is really exciting. When I leave Parkview, I want to be remembered as not just a basketball player, but as a good student and person who encouraged others to make an impact on others and their community."