Accomplished Teen Charis Woo Interns for The Orinda News

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(Sally Hogarty, Photographer)
High school junior Charis Woo is the new student intern for The Orinda News.

    Well-rounded doesn’t begin to describe Charis Woo, who began interning with The Orinda News in June. In addition to enjoying writing, history and English, the rising junior at Head-Royce also plays the harp, crews with Oakland Strokes, swims in San Francisco Bay raising money for various charities and has clocked over 200 hours at the Contra Costa Solano County Food bank since COVID-19 began.
    “I fell in love with the harp when I was just five. My mother and I were walking by a store in Walnut Creek and I heard this beautiful music. I’ve been playing ever since. I love playing at my grandmother’s retirement home and would like to do the same at other senior centers. Recently, though, the harp has taken a backseat to crew,” said Woo.
    The busy young woman, who was previously a member of the Orinda Country Club swim team, plans on doing her second open water swim for Swim Across America on Oct. 3. The 1.5-mile swim benefits UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals’ fight against cancer.
“It’s very different swimming in open water. On my last swim, the waves and current forced me to stop a lot to be sure I was still on course,” Woo said.
    Journalism piqued Woo’s interest when she added an Expository Writing class, which included writing and editing the school paper, to her schedule at Head-Royce.
    Woo has always lived in Orinda where she attended Sleepy Hollow Elementary School before transferring to Head-Royce as a sixth-grader.
    In 2019, she won the Voice of Democracy essay contest sponsored by local Veterans of Foreign War (VFW) Post 8063. She went on to Sacramento for the state competition.
    “I didn’t win the state prize, but my younger brother, Christian, did this year in the middle school category,” said Woo.
    The energetic teen will do a variety of projects for The Orinda News to include filing, factchecking and writing a few stories.

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