When I asked around about someone well-suited to introduce my 11-year-old daughter the game of volleyball, there was a name that kept popping up.
It was easy to see why - my daughter Jordan's eyes lit up when I told her she'd be meeting up with Rachel once a week. Jordan claimed they were already friends.
Warren senior Rachel Lasecki
But Jordan is a Warren Area Elementary Center fifth-grader and Rachel a Warren Area High School senior.
Who was I to argue?
They met in the Summer Music School Program at Warren Area Elementary Center, and Lasecki immediately became a rock star.
It has something to do with the fact Rachel is genuine with kids; she is a little kid at heart, and she's genuinely interested in what they have to say.
"When Jordan is talking to her, she is genuinely interested in that," said Rachel's mother, Jill. "She loves kids. She wants the best for those kids."
A captain on the Warren girls track and field team, she gets along with everybody, including adults, but it's kids that capture her heart.
It's no surprise that Lasecki wants to become a teacher.
She'll be a good one. She's already a good mentor.
A little "Q & A" with Rachel Lasecki:
Q: Who are your parents, and siblings, and what sports do you play?
A: My parents are Jill and Jeff Lasecki and I have a younger brother, Curtis. I play volleyball and am currently on the track and field team.
Q: Tell me what it is abut volleyball that you love so much?
A: The thing I love about volleyball (Rachel was a second-team all-region all-star as a senior captain) is that I get to play a sport that I love while I get to be with my friends.
Q: You are so good with young children; what is it about working with kids that you love so much? And why do you think they take to you like they do?
A: I like to see all of their different personalities and watch them grow and see what they can become. And also by working with them I can help them grow and learn. I think kids take to me like they do because I can relate to them and I really enjoy their company and I hope they enjoy mine.
Q: Tell me about some of your best experiences in volleyball.
A: During my years of playing volleyball I have been on a travel team and have met many new friends along the way. I also got to be with my high school team almost every day for three months, so we made plenty of inside jokes and became close.
Q: What are your plans for after high school? College? Do you plan on playing sports?
A: After high school I will be attending Westminster College and major in Elementary Education and Special Education.
Q: Are you involved in any organizations/groups outside of sports?
A: I am the secretary of my senior class and am in student council. I also intern at Summer Music School for three weeks at the beginning of summer every year.
Q: What are your hobbies outside of sports, school, and these groups?
A: Outside of school I babysit quite often and spend time with my family and friends.
Q: Who is your inspiration and why?
A: My parents are my inspiration because they are always hard-working and support my decisions whatever they may be.
Q: What do you love most about yourself? And if you're too humble to answer this, too bad!
A: I think I am a fairly easy person to get along with and I'm easy to talk to.
Q: Do you have any bad habits?
A: Well, I say sorry a bit to often.
Q: What are your dreams for the rest of your life? What do you want to become?
A: In the future I hope to graduate college with a degree in elementary education, get a job as a teacher, and settle down to start a family.
Q: Tell me one question I should have asked, but didn't, and then answer it.
A: If you could have any dream career, what would it be?
If I could have a dream career it would be to perform on Broadway. The idea of being on Broadway seems exciting and fabulous.
Editor's note: It's Rachel's birthday today.