Key Communicator

Brooklyn Wrice  |  Senior  |  Papillion-LaVista High School

Basketball is Papillion-LaVista High School senior Brooklyn Wrice’s true love. In addition to playing for her high school team, Wrice played with Omaha Sports Academy in middle school and then moved to The Basketball Factory and Retro Hoops in high school. She has had the honor of playing with many of the best in the state in the class of 2022. “I have a lot of life-long friends around the city and state as a result of playing basketball,” she said.

Playing at such a high level influenced Wrice. “I played with a lot of girls who are currently leaders on their teams across the state of Nebraska who plan to play in college, and when you play with girls like that, you learn a lot and you each take turns stepping up and lifting each other up depending on what is needed at that time.” Papillion-LaVista varsity girls basketball coach Cody Trofholz said Wrice keeps a positive attitude. “She encouraged her teammates to give their all and helped them when they may have been struggling. She always gave maximum effort. Brooklyn was an exceptional communicator for us both in practice and in games.”

Wrice plans to play basketball for Mt. Marty University in Yankton, South Dakota, and study nursing next year. Her goal is to become a nurse practitioner and serve marginalized populations. “As a young woman of color, I often struggle finding care providers that look like me and understand my unique needs. I hope to inspire other young black and brown kids to practice in medicine and to be someone they see as understanding their needs.”

Wrice is an active volunteer study participant for the Center of Childhood Deafness and the Institute for Human Neuroscience at Boys Town. “I have spent hours participating in studies to advance care in the areas of speech and hearing disorders and around the impact that trauma has on brain development.” She also helped establish the Papio PROUD group at her school, which focuses on diversity, equity, and inclusion. “As one of the several young persons of color who presented to a nearly entirely white faculty, I was encouraged by not only the receptiveness of the teachers to hear tough feedback about the experiences of the black and brown students in the school, but I was touched by the vulnerability and courage of my classmates. It was truly a gift and an experience that has strengthened my commitment to serving marginalized populations.”

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