Tatem Foster ('20) on Finding Faith & Family
For Tatem Foster ('20), an 11th grade student attending Hanalani Schools, her priority has always been growing and nurturing her faith in God. That’s why it was clear to her, from day one, that Hanalani Schools was the right choice. “The best thing about Hanalani is the atmosphere and the people. I have more friends who love the Lord here than there were in other schools,” says Tatem, who has been at Hanalani since 7th grade.
“My teachers are good at supporting my faith and encouraging me instead of just teaching the curriculum,” says Tatem. Passionate and impressively dedicated beyond her young years, Tatem works hard at Hanalani Schools to do well in her studies, guided by her teachers. At one point last year, she felt overwhelmed about balancing her co-curricular activities with her school work and personal life. She reached out for help from her drama teacher Mrs. Eoute – someone she always felt she could talk to without fear of being judged or turned away. “Mrs. Eoute gave me the confidence to stay committed and keep going on my path without giving up,” says Tatem. “Some of my other favorite teachers are Mr. Hiers – he is like another dad because he’s kind, genuine and wise – and Mr. Dahlhausen is a really good role model.”
While Tatem loves and excels in math and science, Hanalani’s hands-on, project-based learning structure has helped her in subjects she has a harder time with, like history. “The curriculum empowers me to gain a deep understanding of the subject because you have to do your own research and explain the lesson in your own words. Engaging in the work gives me more confidence to complete the project,” says Tatem.
NOT JUST ACADEMICS
School isn’t just about academics for Tatem – she loves taking Mrs. Eoute’s drama class. She started singing when she was five and realized it was a God-given gift after she gave her heart to the Lord. Singing is now a passion, and she loves performing on stage at Hanalani.
Her favorite Hanalani memory so far is winning “Fight for the Night,” a fun competition between 7th to 12th grade classes, where each class can earn points through playing and winning games or attending school-wide events like basketball and dodgeball games. In 7th grade, Tatem’s class won “Fight for the Night” and she enjoyed a bonding all-nighter where she played games all night with teachers and fellow students. “There’s really no dull moment at Hanalani Schools,” says Tatem. “Every time I’m at Hanalani, I’m with my friends and we’re having fun. Even if I’m having a bad day, I can talk to friends or to my teachers.”
She’s currently taking a prep class that’s helping her plan ahead. Her goal after high school is to attend a mainland college to study science – specifically anatomy and biology. “The prep class teaches you how to be organized and helps you look for colleges and determine what you want to do for the future,” says Tatem. “Hanalani helps you challenge yourself and push you to strive.” She adds, “Come to Hanalani! It’s a really good school. You’ll have a lot of fun and you’ll grow tremendously.”
Her dream? To someday be on Broadway. Here’s to seeing your name in bright lights, Tatem!