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Explorer to Explorer: An Interview with Martin Seals

by Sven Stumbauer

He’s the Helmsman of the Class of ‘24. He’s a debate savant. He’s Boys State Governor. But, he’s also my best friend: Martin Seals. Although he’ll no longer be able to be on campus full-time come next year, I wanted to get a few words from him to serve as one final hurrah to his time as a student at CCHS.

Q: Starting on arguably your most well-known distinction, being Governor of Boys State. In your opinion what doors has your heavy involvement in Boys State opened and what does it mean to be governor personally?

MS: When it comes to the doors that it’s opened, it’s opened a lot of doors, plain and simple, because when you go to this program, you are a part of so many overlapping groups. It’s the entire state of Florida, and so, you're representing people from your hometown: Miami, You're representing people from your own personal American Legion post, mine is Post 31, and you're representing the different groups and friends you make at Boys State. And for the doors it opened are when I had the pleasure come back to school and bring back this “win” if you will, the Governor position, to Columbus, they’re happy, they’re impressed, it’s really kind of fruitful given the variety of interactions I’ve had from it. It helps create more success in the future, sends more people to Boys State, increases civic participation, and teaches you how to be a better leader.

Q: Now moving on to Helmsman, the most recent distinction you earned, and it’s essentially you being chosen to tell the story of the Class of ‘24 and being the student who best represents the class as well. What has becoming Helmsman meant to you?

MS: For me, it was kind of like a thank you. A thank you for staying involved, representing the school, and all that stuff, but it's also an opportunity to thank Columbus for what they’ve offered. And because of that, I got to talk about the super super fun things we got to do and we do that by recapping the four years. Our four years have been very eventful and full of different events, really, and it’s worth recapping, it's worth bringing someone that’s unique, not just someone with the highest GPA, its someone who they feel represents them, the class of 2024, I’ve loved having the distinction of being chosen to represent the Class of ‘24, to tell them about my experience, the Columbus Experience, and what it’s been like being an Explorer.

Q: What has been your favorite activity at Columbus and why?

MS: That’s a good question. For me, there are so many different activities, and it's hard to say which one’s the most fun because they’re all so different. But I will say that my main activity was debate, and that was just the camaraderie that came with it, the traveling we did across the country, debating the world questions that are fun, interesting, and pressing for us to answer. It's super fun to do and it's super fun to hang with your friends and wonder what state you're going to next, so definitely speech and debate was my main one but it doesn't take away from the fun I've had in my other activities.

Q: Do you believe that extracurricular activities strengthen the already strong Columbus Brotherhood? And if so, what advice would you give to students who aren’t as involved outside of the classroom?

MS: I think that extracurriculars absolutely strengthen the bond between Explorers. You know, academics are gonna always gonna strengthen it because of trauma bonding, but with these activities, you get to diversify yourself with your friends, explore career paths, hobbies, and just what you like to do. And, my message for those people who aren't involved isn't something like “rah rah you’re doing it wrong” but just go and have some fun. School especially CCHS isn't just the classroom, it's the things that happen before, after, and sometimes during, so go explore and see what the school has to offer.

Q: How have the teachers that you’ve had and the administration helped you in becoming a better young man?

MS: The thing that I love about the teachers here is that they embody the Marist Pillars, the love of work. Almost every teacher teaches multiple classes, and subjects, and are club moderators at CCHS, and they embody this idea of being diverse but also being great and balancing what they do and being great and balanced teachers in guiding students and their future careers. I've learned to stay committed, disciplined, and balanced, and to just be a good person from them. It’s hard to do these things and they’re all very positive qualities.

Q: Although I and the rest of Columbus would want you to stay for the rest of your life, you will be entering that next chapter and attending the prestigious Morehouse College. What was the decision process like in choosing Morehouse and what do you believe it's going to offer in the future?

MS: The process was one of the hardest decisions I've made in my life. College is about creating the foundation for your life. The decision to go was very tough and in its final stages between FIU, American and Morehouse, I chose Morehouse for multiple reasons, one of them being money. It's a big question and Morehouse offers one of my passions as they have one of the best speech and debate teams in the world and hearing this made me feel like I could continue with love and do my best, grow as a leader, grow my passion and Morehouse just has such a rich history and network. I’m curious to see what opportunities the school has to offer for me. 

Q: I want to give you the floor to say some thank you's you couldn't give in your speech and thank those who made an impact in your life, whether during your time at CCHS or before.

MS: It’s tough to give thank you's at the Helmsman speech because you're timed and it's a lot longer. But if I had to say thank you now, it would be to everybody at Columbus and its extended family, and the reason I'm doing it this way is because there are so many people who make the Columbus experience. It would be so long to say thanks to everyone because everyone's contributions are so monumental. There’s a reason people say it takes a village, it really does, and the Columbus community is the perfect village, all-encompassing, always supportive, and is one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. So, if I could always say thank you, thank you, thank you to those who made this experience for me I always will, and I am always willing and willing to give back, I just can’t wait to see them at some of these events and say what's up how're they doing?: students teachers, administrators, alumni alike. All of them. They’re all now family, They've all been family.  I've got their back and they've got mine, that's brotherhood for you. 

Thanks, Martin. Love you, big bro. I’m gonna miss you next year. We all will. 

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1 Comment

Jun 03

Your the best Sven!! I'm gonna miss this place 😭 best 4 years of my life. Also shout out to J-Boogie‼️ Adelante!!


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