Grace Raber, Paducah Tilghman High School alum and Teen of the Year 2019, is finishing her freshman year at Princeton University where she will double major in Psychology and Creative Writing. While at Princeton she has been involved in Ellipses, Princeton’s slam poetry group, and Theater Intime, a university theater group. She is a copy editor for the student newspaper, the Daily Princetonian. Raber was selected as a summer intern in Newark, NJ, where she had planned to work with a charter school. However, due to the health pandemic, her internship has been cancelled.
In 2019, Paducah Bank Chairman and CEO Joe Framptom presented Raber with her award with these comments."What set Grace apart as this year's Teen of the Year?" Framptom asked. "As a foster child and without the privileges enjoyed by many high-achieving students, Grace has persevered through high school in the fact that she never let her home life or personal struggles keep her from succeeding academically. She has done it on her own and she has never looked back."
Framptom described Raber as high-achieving. She graduated with a 4.0 GPA, with 12 AP credits, was an AP Scholar with Distinction, and held an ACT composite score of 33. She was also a Kentucky Governor's Scholar, a state representative for the Commissioner's State Student Council and earned a full scholarship to Princeton.
"Still, Grace sees the power in the helping hand, and said she doesn't feel like any of her achievements were completely self-made," Framptom said. "That's why Grace views her academic success as a way for her to uplift fellow foster children and set an example for her foster and biological sisters."
Raber will be the first member of her family to attend a four-year university, and plans to pursue a career as a psychologist, with dreams of one day opening an independent practice.