Student Profile: Ben Johnson-the Patriot man, the Patriot myth, the Patriot legend

From Issue 7

Most students at Jackson Prep have heard of Ben Johnson. Some know him as the Patriot Man, our very own school mascot. Ben applied for the job at the start of his 10th grade year and was accepted because of academic success and willingness to represent his fellow students. His strong sense of school spirit and incredible amount of energy allow him to be one of the best mascots Prep has ever had. He carries this role with pride and is always willing to help hype up Prep students at any given time. When asked what the role meant to him, Ben said that “I love to hype up everybody who comes to our sporting events, because it’s so motivational to our players.” He also stated that “a good attitude and shameless school spirit is needed in order to make an effective mascot.”

Photo courtesy of Ben Johnson
Ben Johnson, the Patriot Man, unicicles down the track to support the football team.

But Ben isn’t just a mascot. He’s also known as the guy who’s good at everything (almost). He can cook an excellent egg over a campfire and speak a good bit of Chinese, which he was inspired to learn after he met his first Chinese foreign exchange student at Prep. Ben found that the lack of communication he had with some of the students wasn’t allowing him to get to know his new friends better, so he decided to dedicate time every day towards becoming bilingual.  

Ben is also a state contender in US table tennis, which he has trained hard in since a young age. Table tennis is a sport that Ben can embarrass almost anyone in, thanks to his quick reflexes and near perfect aim. He is known for strategically using spin on the ball to keep opponents guessing on where to place their paddle. When asked if he would pursue the sport collegiately, Ben explained he had higher aspirations in life but that he would keep it as a hobby.

Photo courtesy of Ben Johnson
Ben Johnson glows while canoeing to school.

All who know him can also agree he’s quite a friendly guy. Ben is always willing to help a student out, whether it be with physics homework or car trouble. Being a go-to guy in so many ways isn’t easy, but Ben has truly embodied servant leadership in his time at Prep to younger students that look up to him and the role he plays.

Most people don’t know these things about Ben because he’s such a humble guy, but get to know him and you’ll find that he has quite an intellectual personality. When asked why he and his friend canoed to school at 3 in the morning, Ben simply replied “why not?” Ben always asks this question when doing something stupid because it’s beneficial by convincing him to take that path. 

When asked to describe a couple of things to define his lifestyle, he said that one should “beg for forgiveness not permission,” and that “no matter what Mrs. Scruggs does, we will never be a communist state.” 

Ben hopes to attend the Naval Academy when he graduates from Prep, and to travel the world and one day have children that he hopes are more athletic than he is.