ORANGE PARK – A marvel of time management, Tyler Jump shows that community service can be more than an accumulation of hours to fulfill a requirement, it can be a way to inspire your peers and make a difference in the community.
As a senior Orange Park High, Jump has earned approximately 1,700 hours of community service. With his motto in life being, "Just try to make life the best that you can," Jump has been able to live out his philosophy, and explained with excitement and passion the projects he is involved with and his love of the Jacksonville community.
"I am only here once, I only get to experience high school once, I am going to make the best of it," Jump said.
A quick look at his involvement in the past four years proves so. Not only does he have four digits of service hours, he is class president, captain of the Raider’s cheerleading squad, involved in the National Honor Society, Beta Club, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Students Working Against Tobacco, Ecology Club, president of the National Italian Honor Society, and volunteers as the softball team’s manager. He also made the OPHS tennis team Feb. 18.
It is Tyler’s Tabs, an organization he started with his mother when he was seven, that he is most passionate.
"With the donations we are able to help Ronald McDonald House to purchase things that they really need, from cereal to cleaning materials, we are the most involved school in the area with the organization," Jump said.
The organization has grown from a small family operation, to involving his friends, school staff and fellow students.
"Orange Park is a different kind of school, we realize we are the future and we are a diverse group, and that more than anything that sets us apart from other schools, we are diverse," Jump said.
Beyond his many activities, Jump still maintains a 3.9 grade point average and is excited about entering college this summer at The University of Florida.
"My mom is a diehard Seminole, and my dad a Hurricane, so I chose the Gators," Jump said. His mom is a teacher at OPH and father works for UPS. He explained how the support he gets from his mom and his dad has enabled to accomplish so many things in high school.
With an amalgam of interests he enjoys reggae music, history, hanging out with his girlfriend, and admits to getting a little bit of "senioritis." He unwinds from his busy schedule by participating in Civil War Reenactments every couple of months, a hobby since he was 13.
He looks back over high school as a great time in his life, and looks forward to his time in college with plans to major in Business and Criminology. As for maintaining his level of involvement of community service and school, he plans to scale back a bit for college.
"I want to still be involved and do some volunteer work, but now is the time for me to focus on my life, and on academics. I am inspired by the good I see within people, I’m not naïve, and know there is a lot of bad in the world but I believe that there are a lot of good people too, and I see so much potential in the people of Jacksonville," Jump said.
Jump currently lives on the Westside of Jacksonville while attending OPH, and feels that he has witnessed vastly different kinds of life, from extreme poverty and crime, to the most wealthy. It is his belief that drives him to want to become Mayor of Jacksonville one day, after becoming a police officer. He explained that with all he has done and seen, he is would like to come back to Jacksonville to help the city continue to grow and become great.