A natural curiosity for human nature and a desire to follow in the footsteps of her father has led Lincoln senior Justine Ransdell down the path to her career goals.
Ransdell, who graduated May 13, will leave in July for her studies at the Naval Academy prep school in Newport, Rhode Island, before heading to the Naval Academy in Andover, Maryland.
“I am going to study psychology and eventually I hope to work in military intelligence,” Ransdell said. “I’ve always been interested in what drives a person to do what they do and I think that would be very helpful in the intelligence field.”
Ransdell will spend one year at prep school before entering the Naval Academy. After her five years of study are completed, she plans to serve in the Navy or Marines as an officer with hopes of making a career in military service, perhaps one day working at the Pentagon.
“My dad and my principal (Mark Spanagule) both served in the Marines and they played a big part in my decision to enter the military,” Ransdell said. “It seemed to be a very good option for both of them.
“I plan on remembering my hometown; I think it is one of the things that will set me apart from others at the Academy,” she added. “The values and things that I have learned here will stay with me forever and I will always hold them dear.”
Setting goals and being involved in helping others has helped Ransdell develop her leadership skills, something she will rely on in her future.
Ransdell has served as the president of NJHS and NHS as well as a class officer. Additionally she has been involved in FBLA, Student Council, Art Club and the Robotics Team at Lincoln. She also played basketball and was a manager for the Cardinals softball team.
“I think being a part of a lot of clubs has really helped me,” Ransdell said. “I try to focus on whatever the task is at hand and I always want to do the best I can in any situation.
“I would tell that to any student in high school,” she added. “They need to work as hard as they can and set goals, but they should remember to have fun too and make the most of the time they have because high school will go by really fast.”
Ransdell added that her teachers and the community have been very helpful and supportive in helping her achieve her goals.
“Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler and (U.S.) Sen. Claire McCaskill were both very kind in writing letters in support of my application to the Academy,” Ransdell said. “I have received a $300,000 scholarship to pay for my education, which I am extremely grateful for.
“Before I go, I want to spend as much time as I can with my family and friends and be with my loved ones,” she added. “I know there is no telling how things may change in the future but I have a good idea of where I want to be.”
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484