The doors to Johnston’s future will begin opening soon. In fact, they’ll open much sooner than fall, when most college students head to campus.
“I leave for boot camp July 1,” Johnston said. “I’m definitely nervous about boot camp, but I’m excited to know it will make me a better person. It will be tough physically and mentally, but it will make me a better person.”
After boot camp, Johnston will move onto campus and begin her schooling.
“I will get a Bachelor’s of Science,” she said. “I have four years to earn a degree in political science, then I have five years of active duty, unless I get accepted to graduate school. If I get that opportunity, I definitely want to do that.
“I’ll serve my five years, if I enjoy it, I’ll certainly think about making it a career.”
The Navy will not make Johnston choose her career path until later in her academic training, unlike most colleges, which encourage students to choose a major before ever setting foot on campus.
“I know at the beginning of my freshman year, I’m interested in foreign affairs because of Model U.N. and Dr. (John) Patterson (a former Jefferson teacher and current state congressman),” she said. “At the beginning of my junior year, I’ll start looking at careers.”
Johnston has a good foundation upon which she has relied through the years, including her parents and siblings, Dawn, Lonnie, Hailey and Vaughn.
“My parents and siblings have always been supportive through my academics and sports,” she said. “Though I wasn’t as successful as I’d have hoped, they’ve always been behind me in all the things I’ve attempted to do. During the tough times in academics, they’ve been there. There were moments when they asked what they could do to help more, or they wished there was more they could do to help, but they were always there. I wouldn’t be the person I am or have the opportunities I have, if my parents wouldn’t have been there to support me.”