Meet Entrepreneur and 2022 Laurel Springs School Graduate Kathryn Keating
Kathryn Keating is no ordinary high school graduate. She’s an entrepreneur, activist, soon-to-be college student, and so much more.
The 2022 Laurel Springs School graduate and Long Beach Island, New Jersey, resident first started at Laurel Springs in November 2020 in response to the pandemic. It was an unexpected turn that yielded great results.
“My school wasn't really equipped for online learning with COVID-19," Kathryn said. “So we decided to make the switch then. Laurel Springs gave me a much more flexible arrangement. I was able to get my schoolwork done in two or three hours a day, rather than the eight hours sitting in school. So that's been such a huge help. I have so much time to do the things that I love.”
Kathryn Keating: Inspiring Action
Kathryn's love of the environment led her down the entrepreneurship path early. She started RenewBluSurfCo in January 2021, imagining and launching the company in the final years of her high school career. Inspired by a love for surfing and desire to restore the oceans, all products and packaging are 100% eco-friendly, with a portion of profits donated to ocean-based foundations. One organization Kathryn strongly supports is the Alliance for a Living Ocean, whose mission is to maintain clean water and a healthy coastal environment through education, research, and active participation.
You could say Kathryn’s interest in conservation and social impact was piqued while at Laurel Springs. She pursued coursework that supported her efforts to build a business in an industry she cares about deeply, related to her own experiences.
“I live in Long Beach Island (New Jersey), so I'm right on the beach,” she said. “And what's really cool about Laurel Springs is I was able to take more personalized classes (to help benefit) my company. For example, I took Marine Science last year, which inspired me to learn more about marine ecosystems. So I was able to apply (a lot of that knowledge) to my company, which I thought was really cool.”
Speaking of academics, Kathryn says Laurel Spring’s flexible nature helped her focus on both school and her business. She’d devote the morning to academics and spend the afternoon working on her business. Kathryn is highly driven and not afraid of a challenge.
She gets those traits from her grandfather, who was also an entrepreneur, and her brother, who Kathryn says also helped influence her career path.
“My grandfather was really big with entrepreneurship,” she said. “And then I have a 20-year-old brother, and he started three companies. So I’m definitely inspired by that. And that's where (my interest in entrepreneurship) came from.”
Riding the Waves
Having a business proved to be a healthy outlet for Kathryn during the worst of the pandemic. She’s a dancer and played field hockey but was unable to pursue either during lockdown. At the same time, she wanted to make an impact. Thus, the birth of RenewBluSurfCo.
Now, with high school behind her, she’s looking forward to next steps.
“I'm going to Lehigh University for business management and marketing,” Kathryn says. “That degree will help me continue the business, and then after college, I've hopefully grown it big enough so that it’s my job.”
Flexibility Opens Doors
Kathryn says Laurel Springs’s caring instructors helped contribute to her success as a student.
“I feel like the biggest advantage (of going to Laurel Springs School) is that you have the flexibility to pursue other interests and other things you're passionate about, and, at the same time, you’re getting a good education,” she said. “You have such a big support team at Laurel Springs. The guidance counselor helped me and she met with me so many times. I feel like having those people to support you and be there for you whenever you need them is really important. And they did a great job with that.”
Stay connected to Kathryn and others in the Laurel Springs alumni community as a member of LSS Alumni Connect. Join today!
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