MORTON, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Emma Skinner has been running ahead of everyone else for a long time.
And not just in cross country. The straight-A student is taking college-level classes at Illinois Central College to get a jump start on her degree.
“I’ve been taking some medical field classes, that’s what I’m thinking about going into,” Skinner said. “It’s helping me figure out what I want to do when I graduate college.”
The senior is a team captain for the Morton cross country team. And she’s been a leader in school the past few years as part of a Learn to Lead program, designed to empower teenage girls with leadership qualities.
“We’re helping the girls in my school come together, working on team work, individual growth and help lead,” said Skinner.
And she’s used her love of running to help children with cancer. The past couple of years, she’s been a St. Jude’s runner, helping raise money for families who’s kids were diagnosed with the disease.
“Obviously, I’m running every day and running out here but I’m doing it for myself and my teammates,” Skinner said. “When I do the St. Jude run, I know I’m actually making an an impact. I know how grateful those kids are and those families. It means so much to them that they don’t have to worry about paying those bills, just worry about their child getting better.”