May 23—Throughout high school, Alpine's Lourdes Acosta made sure she challenged herself to consistently improve.
That mentality helped when she took difficult science courses, added in dual credit through Sul Ross State University and competed in various sports.
When Acosta wasn't in class, she'd normally be competing in cheerleading, track or golf.
"Being organized definitely was a thing I had to learn and I've gotten advice from so many coaches and teachers," Acosta said. "Just getting all my things done one at a time and being super organized in what I'm doing throughout the week and events I had to attend, that's really what helped me doing multiple things at once."
All of Acosta's hard work was building up toward her future at the next level, as she has plans to study to become a neurosurgeon.
She wants to start her collegiate career at Midland College, then she'll go to medical school at the University of North Texas.
"Since I was younger and going to doctor's offices and hospitals, I always felt like I wanted to be one of those doctors," Acosta said. "I've always been super interested in the brain and how it operates and how it affects us, so that's when I decided on neurosurgery, that's something I want to do."
In her time at Alpine High School, Acosta became a standout cheerleader with multiple awards in her athletic resume.
She competed at state her freshman, sophomore and senior year, receiving All-American nominations each year.
Acosta also made sure she helped the people around by volunteering time at cross country meets, track meets and powerlifting competitions.
She added in some community service when she had the chance.
Cheerleading coach Sandra Fellows said Acosta has always been a leader since she started on the high school campus.
"Her dedication and the fact that she was coachable, anything we asked of her, she tried," Fellows said. "I think she did a great job of leading by example, she had a great attitude."
Acosta and three other seniors will be leaving their spots on the high school cheerleading team, leaving behind a sizeable gap to fill when it comes to their leadership roles.
Fellows believes her younger cheerleaders will need to pick up where the veteran group left off and continue pushing hard to achieve positive showings.
The coach believes Acosta will accomplish her goals in college because of the example she set through high school.
"She has her goals and in the four years I was with her, any time she set a goal she accomplished it," Fellows said. "I'm excited to see what she does."
Acosta will graduate fifth in Alpine High School's Class of 2022, making her mark near the top of a competitive group of seniors.
The student-athlete said she was initially surprised when her counselor told her of her spot in the class rankings.
"I'm definitely proud of myself for getting up there, at least in the top 10," Acosta said.
Acosta will use the finishing spot as motivation to continue getting the highest marks when the courses get more challenging later on in school.
She wants to try and continue her cheerleading career in college, but she doesn't think she'll pursue any other sports at the next level.
By competing in multiple sports at Alpine, she learned lessons in discipline that she believes will help as she works toward her career.
"You have to show up, you have to be there and you have to put in the work," Acosta said. "It's definitely a lot of discipline, organization as well."
>> Academic Rank: No. 5 (of 84)
>> Sports: Cheerleader; Track
>> Academic bio: Dual Credit (Sul Ross State University); Algebra I Award; Principles of A/V Award; Spanish I Award
>> Athletic bio: Cheerleading (4 years); Track (4 years)
>> Activities: Pep rallies; Volunteering at cross country, track and powerlifting meets; Community service
>> College and major: Midland College (STEM)
>> Goals for the future: Attend Midland College to obtain my Bachelor's degree; Attend medical school at University of North Texas in hopes of becoming a neurosurgeon
>> Favorite subject: Science; Math
>> Favorite book: Blanca & Roja (Anne-Marie McLemore)
>> Favorite musician: Ariana Grande
>> Role model: My parents (I have looked up to them for as long as I can remember)