Lemlem Gamble, Class of 2018

Lemlem Gamble, Class of 2018, has spent the last four years suiting up in green and white as a member of the soccer, lacrosse, basketball, and cross country teams. In addition to athletics, Lemlem is a member of Sisterhood and the Jewish Student Union clubs, and had a starring role in this year’s Upper School musical, Chicago, where she delighted audiences as Mama Morton. After graduation, Lemlem plans to study engineering at Washington and Jefferson University.
What is your best Ellis memory?
My best Ellis memory is sitting in Ms. Dotson’s office with so many different generations of Ellis students. From sophomores to people that were freshman in college, it was nice to see the community that Ellis has and how it still links us all together even after we’ve graduated. Two of the people who graduated were talking about moving to London together which was really sweet. I’m glad I have that community.

Is there a teacher or teachers at Ellis who have had a particularly strong influence on your life?
I have to give a shout out to Mr. Rauhala and Mr. Israel. They both have taught me more than once and have gotten to know my personality. Mr. Israel has taught me all four years and has seen my character arc—from struggling freshman year to becoming more responsibly my junior year.  He supported me through that, encouraged me to take chances, and told me that I was capable of doing anything I set my mind to. Mr. Rauhala has done the same thing. Especially encouraging me to stick with physics. I think that type of support and having other people who believe in me was something that made me believe in me. They’ve really impacted my life.

What is special about your experience at an all-girls school like Ellis?
It’s nice to have people in my life who generally have the same experiences that I do. I can go somewhere and say, “Oh this thing happened to me” and other people say “that happens to me all the time”. Seeing girls take on leadership roles by leading workshops and mini-courses was something that made being a leader more realistic to me as I matured. I went to a coed middle school and the people taking charge of class and extracurriculars were mostly guys because they were louder. I guess I never really thought that I could be important and Ellis helped me realize that I could.

What is your favorite Ellis tradition?
Big sister/little sister is definitely my favorite tradition. My little sister was one of my closest friends at my old school and so having a reason to talk to her, check in on her, and make sure she’s doing okay is really nice. I think it’s so great that every single person at Ellis has a big sister that they can talk to about their issues.

What will you miss most about Ellis when you graduate?
At Ellis, we have open discussions about issues we face because of our gender. Even if we have opposing opinions, here, we can have a discussion about those opinions.

How do you spend your free time?
I spend my free time taking photos and managing my “Cats of Ellis” Instagram account. It’s an account I created as a joke my sophomore year where people at Ellis send me their cat photos and I post them. I have 63 dedicated fans. I think it’s a good way to connect with cat people of the Ellis community.  

How would you describe yourself in three words?
Outgoing. Adventurous. Creative.

What woman inspires you and why?
I admire Ms. McLane-Higginson, my Ellis Latin teacher, because she really inspires me. She’s my advisor this year and she cares about every single one of her advisees. She listens to our problems, helps us do our best, and has really guided me to meet all of my college deadlines. I really admire her energy and that kind of energy is something that I want to bring into spaces, because that positivity and kindness is so important.

What is the most listened to song on your morning commute this year?
I listened to "Starving" by Hailee Steinfeld on repeat for most of 2017.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years, I feel like I’m going to have a nice internship and my own apartment. I want to be living in New York City and I’m going to have a cat. And a cactus. And hanging plants from the ceiling and I’m going to drink water regularly. I want to be on my way to a really good job. Maybe I’ll be working for NASA, who knows, I recently watched Hidden Figures. Maybe, I’ll be playing basketball on the weekends with my friends. I want my walls to be exposed brick and I’m going to have white bed sheets. That’s the kind of life I want to be living.

If you had to thank your parents for this experience, what would you thank them for?
I would thank my mom for supporting me whenever I had a lot of work to do. She always made sure I stayed focused and let me know I wasn’t alone through the hours of essay writing and work. That kind of support got me through it—whether it was staying up late with me or cutting up fruit for me to eat, it was always something that I really needed.  Who’s going to do that for me in the future? I’m going to have to do it for myself. That’s support, that’s love.