Mattress Firm Student of the Week: Belgrade Panther Cassidy Catron

Senior Cassidy Catron's love for volleyball stems from deep within the archives of Panther pride.

"My mom actually played here. She was on the first state volleyball championship team for Belgrade High School when they were back at class C," said Belgrade Panthers middle hitter Cassidy Catron. "I grew to love the sport and grew to love the people I played with and just really have a passion for it and it was a connection with my mom."

But in her life off of the court, she has more connections that are arguably even deeper. Catron is the vice president of Belgrade's National Honors Society which spurred her passion for giving back to others.

"There's a lot of people that are less fortunate and I think it's really, really important that we help them as much as we can because having friends and having a good home life is something that not everyone has and that's mind blowing to me I guess is a good way to put it," said Catron. "I want to do everything I can to help them the best way that I can."

That means volunteering at the food bank, supporting a close-to-home cause, helping out for furry friends, or simply being there for those that need it.

"I know there's a lot of times that Cassidy's giving other kids some tutoring help while we're on the road and even before practices, after practices kind of thing. She's that kind of kid," said Panthers head volleyball coach Jade Schmidt.

Her teammate Tessa Lamb added, "She's an awesome player, an awesome teammate, an awesome friend, an awesome student. I look up to her in every aspect of my life."

In all of Catron's free time (which isn't much), she also competes in academic decathlons and studies immunology and pathology to get ready for college - so someday she can help others even more.

"I'm really interested in viruses and diseases and how exactly we can change them and manipulate them to not be harmful but to rather self destruct. That's what I want to do with my life," said Catron.

As she strives to be a leader everywhere she goes, she's just happy knowing that she's changing lives one way of another.

"It's given me a sort of confidence and sort of feeling that I can go out and I can make a difference," Catron added. "That I can have an effect on people and that I can help them in my own way."

Catron hopes to attend Cornell University next fall.

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