Students of the Week – October 19, 2015

The Addison Independent is proud to publish the Students of the Week from area High Schools each week. The students are chosen by teachers and administration from each school who would like to recognize their exceptional engagement in the high schools they attend.
Middlebury Union High School is pleased to recognize Sophie Saunders as its student of the week. Sophie lives in Middlebury with her mother, Katie Saunders; her father, Tom Saunders, also lives in Middlebury. Sophie’s two sisters, Liz and Molly, are both MUHS graduates.
With appropriate fanfare, it should be noted that Sophie is the only student in Addison County to be named a National Merit Semifinalist for 2015. She is also one of only four Vermont students to be chosen for the National Association for Music Education (NAfME) Honors Concert Band (see the Oct. 8 Addison Independent). Sophie has earned High Honors every semester since ninth grade. She was elected to National Honor Society last spring and serves as secretary. In grade 10, Sophie was accepted to the New England Young Writers’ Conference. She is currently taking or has completed AP Calculus, English, Spanish, Statistics and U.S. History.
Sophie is a member of the Student Coalition on Human Rights (SCOHR) at MUHS, and she participated in the group’s service trip to Nicaragua last April. Sophie has also been active with Girl Scouts and as a Hebrew school aide at Havurah Synagogue throughout high school. On Friday nights, Sophie volunteers at the Community Suppers. Sophie worked a full schedule at Middlebury Market and Sama’s Café last summer, but still found time to tutor several young students in math and science.
Sophie says she loves to play flute, and so it sounds. Besides her NAfME honor, Sophie qualified for the Eastern Honors Ensemble and the New England Music Festival last year. She has also performed annually since ninth grade in the District and All-State festivals.
Sophie truly lives her personal philosophy, “to be kind to everyone because everyone has a story.”
With hopes of attending college in the Boston area, Sophie is considering either engineering or math for her major. It’s our suspicion that there will be some sweet notes floating over the Charles during the next few years. Congratulations, Sophie, for all you have accomplished; and our thanks for all you’ve shared.
Vergennes Union High School is pleased to recognize Dylan Bougor as its Student of the Week. Dylan lives in Panton with his mom, Paula, and stepfather, Rob. His older sister, Brooke, graduated from VUHS two years ago.
Dylan is a student at the Hannaford Career Center. He is in the second year of the diesel program. Recently, Dylan was elected by his peers as vice president for the program.
Dylan is an active member of our larger community. Dylan has been a volunteer firefighter for the town of Weybridge for two and a half years. He grew up there and was introduced to firefighting by his stepdad, so he felt that was where he should join. He has been trained to deal with haz-mat calls, wildland fires and car crashes. In 2014 he was named Outstanding Cadet Firefighter for Addison County.
Dylan enjoys hunting and fishing during his free time.
Dylan gives this advice to other VUHS students: “Don’t waste time and make sure you try your hardest.” Chris Wyckoff, an English teacher at VUHS, said, “The best thing about having Dylan in my class is that no matter what kind of day I am having, Dylan can always put a smile on my face. He is kind, empathetic and never turns his back when somebody needs help. He is a natural leader, although he would never admit that due to his humble nature. He is truly one of a kind, and I will miss hearing his hearty laughter bellowing down the hallways next year!”
Following graduation from VUHS, Dylan plans on attending the University of Northwestern Ohio for diesel mechanics. The faculty, staff and students of VUHS wish Dylan the very best in the future.
Otter Valley Students of the week receive a gift certificate from the Book & Leaf Bookstore. Mt. Abe Students of the Week receive a free pizza from Cubbers. Vergennes Students of the Week receive a free sandwich and drink from 3 Squares Cafe. Middlebury Students of the Week receive a free pizza from Green Peppers. Students of the Week from all area high schools will receive a gift certificate from Vermont Book Shop.
With support from:
Barash Mediation
Business Telephone Systems
Champlain Valley Plumbing and Heating
Jackman Fuels
JW DE Ryan
Martin’s Hardware
United Way of Addison County
Vermont Army National Guard
Vermont Book Shop 

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