Making the shift from high school to college should be a minor challenge for Taylor McLain. After all, he’s already transitioned from one school to another with little difficulty.
It was just after his freshman year in high school that the 2015 Martin Marietta scholarship winner and his family moved from Indianapolis to Kokomo, Indiana, a city about 60 miles north.
Leaving his friends and all that he had known behind was not easy, but McLain says he stayed focused while preparing for life at Kokomo’s Northwestern High School.
Josie, Taylor and Jason McLain.
“I think being in sports helped,” the 19-year-old says. “I was able to make friends before school even started. From there, I branched out, meeting as many people as possible along the way.”
Having run cross country and track and field since middle school, the son of Kokomo Stone Plant Manager Jason McLain easily earned spots on both varsity teams. As a senior, he would captain both squads.
When not on the track, he volunteered and studied hard, rising to the top of his academic class.
As a sophomore, he participated in the Academic Bowl competition at the Indiana Junior Academy of Science. As a junior, he was admitted to the National Honor Society and once named the high school’s student of the month. These successes readied him for advanced placement classes in physics, calculus and chemistry, courses that would further stoke his interest in medicine.
“I want to become an orthopedic surgeon,” he says. “Many people become injured or debilitated by sports, accidents or illness. I hope to one day use my skills to better their lives.”
In addition to Martin Marietta’s scholarship, McLain received the Indiana University Bloomington’s Adam W. Herbert Presidential Scholarship, an award that guaranteed him admittance to the school’s Hutton Honors College. He’ll study biochemistry as an undergraduate.
“I have my parents to thank,” he says. “They’ve always pushed me to maintain my ‘A’ average and helped keep me focused.”