Lynbrook’s very own Sweet Caroline

Lynbrook%E2%80%99s+very+own+Sweet+Caroline

Photo and Graphic Illustration by Audrey Wong

Ashley Song

When Neil Diamond wrote “Sweet Caroline,” chances are he was writing about senior Caroline Tjoe. Adored by many classmates for her kind demeanor and wide range of skills, Tjoe brings an inimitable radiance to the Lynbrook campus.

Many students may know Tjoe for her Instagram cooking account @atelier.tjoe, on which she posts pictures of various treats and meals she makes in her free time, featuring character bento boxes, salads and cakes.

“I’ve been exploring cooking for the past four years,” Tjoe said. “I would just go home after a really bad day and bake and it kind of became my outlet. I took the SATs twice and the night before I wouldn’t even study, I would just bake for the entire night. It is like a way for me to completely de-stress and it is something that I enjoy doing a lot.”

Time in the kitchen is the perfect recipe to take her mind off of things, given the handful of extracurricular activities on her plate, including cross country. Having initially only participated in track and field, Tjoe never seriously considered running for cross country until her coach recommended her for it. Though intimidated at first by the arduous long-distance runs, she now relishes her memories on the team.

“Through trying something new I’ve met all my really really close friends,” Tjoe said. “When we go on runs we talk about really silly things and we belt out karaoke songs and things like that. It’s really fun, and just some experiences that I am especially grateful to have.” 

Among her close friends, one of her dearest is her younger sister, Alison. Though two years apart in age, many of their hobbies such as dance and piano overlap, so they see each other often, bringing them closer together. In the turbulent environment of high school, having someone to vent to in stressful times and to share joy with in moments of triumph is a blessing.

“I’m really proud to say that I have a really good relationship with my sister,” Tjoe said. “As you get older, you kind of realize how important it is to have such a close-knit group of people around you. It’s just really awesome to have someone there.”

As graduation is a mere three months away, Tjoe and her sister will soon no longer be able to see each other everyday. With this in mind, she has advice gleaned from her own high school experience to pass on to Alison and any other underclassmen willing to listen.

“All the things we do in high school, we think that it’s all that matters,” Tjoe said. “Everything we do now, we think it’s the most important thing in life. Try to find ways to also enjoy the actual high school experience. I think that’s super important. While maintaining my growth and maintaining grades is important, of course, studying is not the most important thing in life.”