Senior story: Ally Thorson

Many students talk about leaving a legacy at their high. school so future students will remember them, but it fades away after a few weeks, months or years after graduation. Senior Ally Thorson is leaving a colorful legacy at East Mecklenburg High – a colorful mural of five students called "Education Through Diversity."

"I started small, but then I realized it needed to be bigger and at a vertical angle," said Ally. "Then I knew I wanted it somewhere that would be visible to the diversity of students at East Meck."

The stairwell in the 500 building offered the best angle and visibility. But, how did she get approval to paint on the wall of the school?

"I asked," she said. "First I asked Ms. Hays, the IB [international Baccalaureate] coordinator. She said to ask Mr. Parker the principal. He was excited to have it done."

Ally has been in the IB program since she attended Randolph Middle. Prior to that, she attended Bain and Idlewild elementaries. The program prepared her to be a critical thinker and to question things. That is how she got the courage to ask the important question.

Now her mural will be seen by all students who use the 500 building stairwell for years to come.

Although artistically talented, Ally is planning a career in science. She will attend the

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to study biomedical engineering. She is considering concentrating on prosthetic design or genetics.