A Speaker From Down Under


Andrew Drecnik , Staff Writer

Across the country high schools are doing their part to combat bullying and hate in school. Upper St. Clair High School has joined the long list of schools by launching their new program “No Place For Hate.”  

This new program is aimed to help students learn and accept others’ differences so they can build a community where everyone is respected. The high school will be hosting assemblies about once a month, each one will be about how hate will not be tolerated. 

On Friday February 21st, Upper St. Clair High School hosted the first of many assemblies with Kate Fitzsimons as the special guest speaker. Kate Fitzsimons is a world renown teen motivational speaker from Australia. Kate has an incredible story about how anyone can come back from the worst of situations.

For her entire life Kate’s best friend in the entire world was her older sister Nicole. Unfortunately one night on her honeymoon, Nicole was in a motorcycle accident and passed away. The loss of her sister and best friend was hard for Kate, and she was angry for a long time. Instead of letting her anger consume her she decided to take a different path. 

 “May not be what you hoped, but it’s never a waste. Always a memory. Always a lesson. A moment to grow from.” This quote from Kate Fitzsimons herself was handed out to every student at USC moments before Kate took the stage. 

 Kate decided to use her suffering as a chance to help others heal from their own pain. She became a teen motivational speaker and has talked at 150 different schools and helped around 50,000 kids. 

Her work has drawn the attention of people from all across the world. Kate was recently voted as one of Australia’s top 100 women of influence. Her ability to connect with people and empathize with them has left a lasting impact on the students of USC. 

Tyler Bond, a senior at USC, had this to say when asked about Kate’s motivational speech: “I enjoyed it. She had a lot of good things to say.” 

Kate’s assembly was one of many events included in USC’s new program “No Place For Hate.” Given the success of Kate Fitzsimons’ assembly, it’s safe to say that students can expect to see other events similar to this in the near future. 

Shannon Taraszewski, a senior at USC, had this to say on whether she’d like to see a future event similar to this one: “Yes, but with a stronger topic.” 

People like Kate Fitzsimons are essential in our modern world. Their ability to connect with people and help them work through their problems is simply amazing. She left a lasting impact on the students and staff at USC that they will never forget.