CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Spectrum News 1's High School Scholar program is about to wrap up for the season, but not before we recognize one more, very high achieving senior.

What You Need To Know

  • Kate Coppage is maintaining a 4.78 GPA at Charlotte Latin School

  • She clinched the 2019 championship for her tennis team

  • She volunteers through CaroMont Health and ACEing Autism

Kate Coppage may be a top player for her varsity tennis team and in the top 10% of her class at Charlotte Latin School, but she was clueless about the reason for a gathering in her honor.

“No, I'm not really sure,” Kate said that day. It's probably one of the few times in her high school career that she hasn't had the answer.

“I appreciate the opportunity anytime our community comes together to celebrate our young leaders, and I've been reading about you and was especially impressed,” said Rep. Brandon Lofton, who represents in the North Carolina state house district in which Kate's school is located.

As Kate stood in a bit of shock, Lofton told her, “This is a $1,000 scholarship from Spectrum and Charter Communications. Spectrum wants to congratulate you. It's a celebration of all of your accomplishments and hard work and an investment in your future. So, congratulations.”

Kate's parents, Kevin and Meredith, also helped keep the secret.

“I had no idea what was going on,” Kate said.

Jody Jennings, her college counselor at Charlotte Latin, penned her letter of recommendation.

“Well, she's selfless and she's not going to be the person to talk about herself,” Jennings explained. “She is phenomenal, and just look at her list of accolades.”

Kate, who's captain of the tennis team, doesn't just lead on the court. Her grades exceed perfection.

“4.78, that's huge,” Lofton said in reaction to Kate's grade point average. “That's really impressive.”

She juggles all of that with a commitment to giving back.

“I was also excited to see your volunteer work in the community as an interpreter at CaroMont Health and also at ACEing Autism,” Lofton said during the scholarship presentation.

Kate already has a game plan for the next stage of her education.

“Use my passions for medicine, and science, and Spanish to possibly go on to do biology and Spanish, possibly pre-med,” she said.

It's why her mentors and parents both describe her as a role model for setting high goals and achieving them, despite a school year unlike any other.

“It's amazing to be at home sometimes, to see what's happening,” Kate's father said. “It's sort of a glimpse into their high school life that you would never ever see. So, that's the silver lining.”