Meet Emily Walker: Balancing Academics, Arts and Athletics

Junior Emily Walker has loved art and drawing since she was a young child. "I used to ask my mom to draw me dragons and dogs for me to color. She was pretty good, but I realized early that if I wanted to create my own animations I had to learn myself," she said with a laugh.

Throughout her academic career the Bernardsville native has explored and applied herself in many different art classes. Walker joined Gill St. Bernard’s School her freshman year after attending Far Hills Country Day School. While she was not able to fit an art course into her schedule her freshman year, she quickly sought out the Upper School Art Club where she met Fine Arts Chair Sarah Isusi. As a sophomore, Walker excelled in studio art and is currently taking portfolio development. Next year, she will continue to develop her high school portfolio with AP 2-D design.

"I am fortunate to work with such a diverse group of motivated students like Emily, who choose to take art throughout their high school years at Gill," Isusi said. "Emily established herself as a leader in the Art Club freshman year and continues to manage many of the collaborative projects with dedication. She sets high expectations for herself and delves deep into her studio work, often spending whatever free time she has during and after school in the studio. It has been a pleasure witnessing Emily's creativity as she communicates her thoughts and ideas through her work."

In addition to her work in the art studio, Walker is enjoying theater. She was cast in the last two GSB Players productions and will have a leading role in the musical Into the Woods this spring. An honors student, she is also a member of the track and field and cross-country teams.

Walker, who says oil and watercolor are among her favorite media to work with, is just in the early stages of her college search but said she will definitely pursue a degree in the arts. "I would love to work in the animation industry, creating storyboards and illustrations."

A recent painting of Walker's, a still life in oil, will be one of several featured in a collection of student works presented at the Gill St. Bernard's 2018 Winter Art Exhibition this Thursday, January 11, from 3:00-5:00 p.m. The show will take place at Hemm House and will highlight K-12 student art work from the first half of the school year.

Taking on academics, athletics and arts with a sense of ease, Walker credits the support she receives from her classmates and teachers. "I love that Gill gives you the opportunity to do so many things while still allowing you to focus on school," she said. "It's a very supportive environment that encourages us to take on things we’ve never tried before – allowing us to take risks and try something new," she said.
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Gill St. Bernard’s is a private, coeducational day school for students age three through grade 12, located in suburban New Jersey. Each of the three school divisions provides a rigorous, meaningful and age-appropriate curriculum, and all students benefit from the environmental learning opportunities that exist on our 208-acre campus.