Diving Into the Deep End with Imani Waters

Imani Waters is an accomplished graduating senior at OCSA.


Imani Water’s is an accomplished graduating senior at OCSA.

Ruby Carrero-Pomales, Reporter

For decades people have walked through the halls of OCSA, but not everyone whose been in this soulful school is remembered. For those in the Hall of Fame, their mark will not easily be lost. Graduating senior and Hall of Fame title holder Imani Waters stands as one of these people. While in the yearbook she may be known as the, “Most likely to be late to graduation,” To her friends and seniors there are so many different words to describe her and her impact.

From her beginnings here, Imani has always been an exceptional musician. In an interview with OCSA’S band director, Mr. Molineaux, when asked about his initial impression compared to her now of her he said, “She’s always been well determined, always been a hard worker and I think through that determination and hard work, all the way through middle school into High school, has really helped her excel to be one of the top performers in our program.” Her hard-work and dedication has truly earned her a spot in OCSA’s hall of fame.

When asked the same question, Stephen Grindel responded with, “Imani is a talented and hard-working student. She is also very caring and compassionate and has been an incredible mentor and example for our younger band students at OCSA.”

Grindel added on with, “Imani is a talented and hard-working student. She is also very caring and compassionate and has been an incredible mentor and example for our younger band students at OCSA.”

Imani’s enthusiasm shines through with all she talks to. In her interview she smiled consistently, upholding her cheery mood. Her passion was clear, when asked why she loved band she responded with, “There are a lot of things I like about band, the collaboration is probably the best part, making music with so many talented individuals on stage and create something impactful.”

Her devotion to music is contagious, influencing her peers. In an interview with good friend of Imani, Caroline Centeno, she stated, “She’s shown me what it is to be passionate about your art and to be dedicated and committed to what you love.”

While Imani may be incredible talented, she’s also wickedly smart. Last February Imani was able to present a ted talk. With the choice to speak about any subject in the world, she spoke on something that most wouldn’t dare; Periods. When asked about the inspiration for her ted talk, Imani responded with, “My tedtalk was about pushing the limits of what people are comfortable with. For those of you who didn’t know, it was about the stigma surrounding periods in U.S. culture and it’s an issue that needs to be addressed more.” Pushing the boundaries may be uncomfortable at first, but with change comes conversation. Imani stands as someone who will help the world progress into a brighter era. With her influence as a teacher, she’s sure to be able to help make the world a better place for her students.

With tutoring in mind, her efforts have not gone in vain. Her students appreciate her work, and are impacted by it every single day. Every 5th period she tutors the 6th grade band students, working with them to help them improve. One of her students, Leah, was asked about the impact Imani has had on her studies. In response, Leah said, “Well, for me, I’m a brass student and she plays the trumpet, and I’ve had troubles with my low notes, and she’s helped me with my orchestra and everything, giving me tips and helped me really improve my sound.” And with her dreams to go into music education, her students are confident she’ll excel. In the same interview, Gabbie, another 6th grader she has been teaching commented, “I think she’ll be a great teacher, because she has a lot of positive attitude and patience.”

And while Imani has been able to help others, she says she wouldn’t be the person she is today if it weren’t for her directors, “I would not be the person I am now if it weren’t for our three band directors: Mr. Molineux, Mr. Cusick, and Mr. Grindel, they have not only helped me develop as a musician, they have helped me develop as a person and I would not be here today if it weren’t for them.”

Imani’s caring nature will make her an incredible teacher, and in regards to all the recognition she’s been given, she had this to say, ‘I had no idea I had made such an impact on our peers, I’ve never been an amazing straight A student, but I think my presence in the classroom is something. I’ve always had a passion for learning, I like to help others and show them what they think their capable of.” Even though she may not have known how important she was, everyone around her will forever be impacted by her kindness. Although her hall of fame title may be goofy, she will always be recognized as a legend in OCSA and the hearts of her friends.

Persistent, Determination, Fierce, Intelligent, Helpful, Freakishly talent, are all words that people would call graduating senior Imani Waters. Her hard work and dedication has earned her a spot in the Hall of Fame, but her cheerful and kind spirit has earned her a place in the hearts of all. From not only the numerous performances she’s had here at OCSA, the impact she’s had on those around her will always stay. From her time spent tutoring the developing band students and time spent with friends. The memory of her will live on in the halls of OCSA.