Anthem teen Gabe Geselle inspires, supports, and teaches local youth
By Emma Suttell
Photos by Ashlyn Drayton
Gabe Geselle, a Boulder Creek High School senior, not only loves Anthem’s sense of community, but also enjoys contributing to the lives and well-being of fellow youth in the area. A lifeguard, swim coach, and youth group coach, Gabe invests her free time into inspiring, supporting, and teaching the youth of Anthem. She credits Anthem as a community that is always aiming to create the best environment for every family.
Since age 5, Gabe’s been involved in recreational swimming, and has continued to be a leader in the sport for her community. “I’m really passionate about swim because I grew up around the water. This year, I was the co-captain of Boulder Creek Swim and Dive. I actually work for Anthem as a lifeguard and a swim coach, which is really cool because the community center makes it really team-focused. I really like that because I get to bond with my co-workers and others that work for the community center,” she says.
Working with youth up to age 6, Gabe emphasizes that “being a swim coach is a really fulfilling job” because she gets the opportunity to work with children while teaching them a life-saving skill.
Gabe’s work with youth doesn’t stop on the weekends; she also serves as a youth coach at Christ Church of the Valley’s Anthem campus. There, Gabe works with seventh-grade girls, and commits every Saturday night to connecting with them. Of a typical Saturday night, she says, “The girls are in a stage where they’re starting to figure out who they are and who they want to become. I like helping them navigate the struggles of middle school; I get to reflect on what I went through as a middle schooler and apply what I’ve learned to what they’re going through.”
Volunteering at CCV also led Gabe to commit to the life of a little girl in Colombia. Through a program called Compassion International, Gabe sponsors a young girl named Katerin from Colombia, providing her with money for food, clothing, and other vital essentials. After explaining Compassion International’s mission, Gabe says, “It was really moving to me and I felt like I almost had to do it. I think we take so much for granted in what we have, especially our education and our access to healthcare. As much as we [students] complain about schoolwork, we are so fortunate to have access to knowledge we can use to create a foundation for the rest of our lives. For that reason, I had to share what I have with someone who’s not as fortunate.”
When she entered high school, Gabe had no intentions of staying in-state for college. “I wanted to get out of Arizona and branch out. I toured University of Washington, Baylor, Liberty, and Texas Christian,” she laughs, “basically anywhere that wasn’t in Arizona.” A field trip to Grand Canyon University’s cadaver lab with her biology class changed her outlook on an in-state education; her impression of GCU ended up paralleling her own impression of the Anthem community. Gabe says, “I just kept going back to GCU because they have a great sense of community and they’re very centered on helping students finding their sense of purpose.”
Heading to GCU’s Honors College this fall, Gabe is going to be a biology major with an emphasis in pre-med. Four years after this May’s graduation ceremony, she hopes to be enrolled and heading off to medical school.
One part of her future is certain: Gabe’s definitely left a lasting impact and legacy on BCHS, and the youth of Anthem. No doubt, her impact will continue to influence Anthem’s many generations to come.
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