Katie Haught

Teen Pink profile

With eyes like edgeless pools spilling over with excitement, Katie Haught lights up the room with a broad, toothy smile. If she were a presidential candidate, she would steal your vote. But she doesn't want to be your president. She wants to be your doctor.

"I don't know when it started, but I always knew I wanted to go into the field of medicine. I enjoy taking care of people," said Katie, who recently finished an internship at Dr. Sack's office.

Katie's career ambitions may come as a surprise to those who have seen her name in print, most frequently associated with her sports accomplishments. As captain of Hilton Head Island High School's Lady Seahawks varsity tennis team, playing the number one position this year, she led her team to numerous victories and played a major role in bringing home the 3-A state championship trophy.

"It was so exciting. For it to be my last year was just perfect. This was my fifth year on the team, and I've been pushing for it every year," said Katie.
Since joining the team in eighth grade, Katie has always played the number one or number two position. "I like that leading role; I like pushing my teammates to play well," she said.

According to head coach, Nancy Clouse, Katie is a wonderful leader-well-respected and liked by her peers. "She knows what to do, and the girls followed her directions to a T."

So what does being a superior athlete and popular team leader have to do with becoming a successful doctor? Everything, according to Katie, who believes that the key to success in life is setting goals and making a plan to achieve them. This fall, she will be attending West Virginia University (WVU) on full scholarship, which covers her undergraduate education as well as her first year in medical school. She has her sights set on helping her college team win the Big East Conference, obtaining a national ranking, and, of course, earning her medical degree.

Born and raised on Fripp Island, Katie began playing tennis at age four. Her athletic ability is part natural and part environmental, she says, citing a long line of tennis players on her mother's side of the family and the obvious advantages of living in the Lowcountry-a mecca for world-class tennis instruction along with limitless practice and playing opportunities. By age eight, she was playing tournaments and getting a feel for the competitive aspect of the game. The family moved to West Virginia for a year, but returned to Fripp and eventually settled on Hilton Head Island. According to Katie, the experience of moving several times and attending different schools has helped her develop a well-rounded personality.
Over the years, Katie has trained at both the Van der Meer Tennis Center and Smith-Stearns Tennis Academy. Known for her powerful forehand, steady nerves and unwavering determination, it's a rare day when she doesn't walk away the winner.

But for all her on-court muscle, maintaining a 4.0 grade average, she has the brain power to match. Perhaps what truly sets her apart is her maturity, clarity of vision and strong sense of purpose.

"I have achieved a lot through tennis and keeping good grades," said Katie. "But I think my greater achievements are just now arriving."

Up Close: 
Family: Mom, Kathy; Dad, Cameron; sister, Clara, age 15 When not playing tennis or studying, find her: hanging out with friends, going to the beach, kayaking, snow skiing and attending concerts. Describes herself as: athletic, ambitious, outgoing Memorable moment: Presenting the flowers to Martina Hingis at the Family Circle Cup Advice to other teens: 1) "Have fun in high school, but remember it's only one part of your life. 2) Always know that you can make the right choice." 3) "Get in a good crowd." 4) "Pick what you love to do."