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The Girl in the Pink Bandana: Charissa Feldmann Strives to Leave a Legacy

In+a+field+of+flowers+Charissa+Feldmann+is+all+smiles.+Wherever+she+goes%2C+joy+follows+as+she+continues+to+inspire+those+around+her+to+find+beauty+in+everything+that+life+has+to+offer.
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The Girl in the Pink Bandana: Charissa Feldmann Strives to Leave a Legacy

In a field of flowers Charissa Feldmann is all smiles. Wherever she goes, joy follows as she continues to inspire those around her to find beauty in everything that life has to offer.

In a field of flowers Charissa Feldmann is all smiles. Wherever she goes, joy follows as she continues to inspire those around her to find beauty in everything that life has to offer.

Photo taken by Madison Young

In a field of flowers Charissa Feldmann is all smiles. Wherever she goes, joy follows as she continues to inspire those around her to find beauty in everything that life has to offer.

Photo taken by Madison Young

Photo taken by Madison Young

In a field of flowers Charissa Feldmann is all smiles. Wherever she goes, joy follows as she continues to inspire those around her to find beauty in everything that life has to offer.

Bryant Kitisin and Chase Whitman

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Charissa Feldmann has a heavy schedule during the school year. On top of her two honors and engineering pathway classes and her AP chemistry course load, she also has robotics and basketball to add to the mix.

After the seven-hour school day, she usually comes home to work on homework before her 5 p.m. start time for basketball. After battling it out on the hardwood, Feldmann heads over to room 5103 where she trades in her sneakers for power tools to work on Carina, the robot for her robotics team, Level Up. The tinkering continues to around 9:15 where she would then head back home to finish homework through the late hours of the night and end one busy day, to wake up to the next.

“You’re starting up part of a legacy,” Feldmann said, “helping build this school and their program.”

In addition to classes, basketball and robotics, she is active in NHS, Younglife, Women in S.T.E.M. and participates in almost every student community event. Although it might be a lot, she loves all that they bring to the table.

Senior Emily Howard is the captain of Level Up and has been working with Feldmann for the past two years.

“She brings a lot of positivity. She is always there [in robotics] working and able to help out,” Howard said.

Photo taken by Bryant Kitisin
Feldmann working on the wiring for Carina. They named the robot after the star constellation.

The work that Feldmann and her team have put in continues to shine. Last year, they qualified and participated in the global “FIRST competition” in Houston, Texas as well as winning the award for the best notebook this season, for how detailed and in-depth they went. Their notebook consists of all the designs and processes that the team thinks of.

Feldmann is the third of her sisters to go to Sage Creek; Heather, being part of the first graduating class and Mary, who is currently a senior.

“She lets me be the leader on campus … [she’s also] a familiar face on campus and she’s a bundle of energy,” Mary said.

Although she is fully involved and outgoing on campus, Feldmann’s mindset was different a few years back.

“She used to kinda just be in her own and shut off from other people so that she could not be offended by them,” Mary said.

Charissa has alopecia universalis, a rare autoimmune skin disease that causes total hair loss to all areas of the body. Symptoms started to appear during her third-grade year until she lost almost all of her hair throughout middle school.

While the disease does not affect anything else besides hair, it took a toll on Feldmann growing up.

“It was really devastating to me,” Feldmann said, “I used to have very long hair and was complimented constantly for it and so I put so much of my identity with that.”

From there, Feldmann wore wigs and drew on her eyebrows to cover up her condition. She faced bullying and insecurity throughout middle school. It took time until she was able to accept herself.

“I made the transition this year into my sophomore year to not [wear wigs] anymore,” Feldmann said.

This transition has been recognized by her sister.

“She’s grown into a strong person who is willing to face confrontation,” Mary said, “She’ll really come into her own and become more of a dominant figure on campus.”

Even though it was an alarming wake-up call to Feldmann, she would not change the fact that she has the condition.

Photo taken by Madison Young
Wearing her Alopecia awareness necklace, Feldmann poses for photos to post on her alopecia awareness Instagram. This Instagram account, @alopeciagirl, allows Feldmann to share more of her story with those that are curious.

“[Alopecia] has helped me a lot to become a stronger and braver person,” Feldmann said.

Instead of wearing wigs, she wears a bandana. Mostly she wears a lot of pink because it is her favorite color but she wears blue as well, the color for alopecia awareness.

In addition to her transition from wearing wigs to bandanas, Feldmann recently developed an Instagram profile dedicated to her story while also sharing Alopecia awareness. With bold colors on her head and a smile on her face, every post is added in the hopes of answering any questions that people may have concerning Alopecia.

Today, Feldmann is proud of who she is as a person and eager to be a part of the Bobcat Nation.

“The students on this campus do not put anyone out, but accept everyone for who they are,” Feldmann stated.

Being involved in the campus deeply, Feldmann is excited for her future years here at Sage Creek.

“Being a Bobcat to me means doing the most… our school is amazing and I have enjoyed every second here!”

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “The Girl in the Pink Bandana: Charissa Feldmann Strives to Leave a Legacy”

  1. Aimee on May 15th, 2019 5:37 pm

    Charissa, you are such a strong, independant and beautiful person, you have been the best friend and the biggest role model to me ever since 7th grade. I love you with every bit of my heart and am more than proud to call you my friend. Keep on doing what you are doing and shining like the star I know you are! I love you so much girly!! xx

  2. John on May 15th, 2019 10:07 pm

    Charissa good people. Super inspiring for other bobcats. Great article.

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The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA
The Girl in the Pink Bandana: Charissa Feldmann Strives to Leave a Legacy