Students of the Week – February 27, 2017

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.
 We’re fortunate to have Lily Smith, the daughter of Beth and Dennis Smith of Middlebury, as a member of the senior class at Middlebury Union High School. As Lily looks ahead to graduation in June, she says that the past three and a half years have been filled with challenging academics, caring teachers and coaches, and lots of good friends. Her senior year has been busy with sports and classes, including one in Statistics at the Community College of Vermont. In addition she is taking World History, Anthropology, Art, Spanish and Design.
Lily has taken four years of Spanish and has appreciated Ms. Causton’s positive attitude in the classroom. Lily believes that Ms. Causton’s encouragement and teaching style has promoted her love of Spanish. An outgrowth of her interest in world languages led Lily to pursue a service trip to Costa Rica last summer. While there she stayed with a family, worked with animals, focused on speaking Spanish and enjoyed the cultural immersion. Lily spends her summers working at Green Peppers, a local favorite restaurant in Middlebury.
During the school year, Lily is a three-season Tiger athlete. She’s the left wing for the field hockey team, plays guard in basketball and is the shortstop in softball. She loves sports and wants to continue playing when she heads off to college next fall. Lily has been active with helping to plan the junior prom for her class, which was held at the Town Hall Theater. She designed the tickets and poster with a masquerade theme last year. Another favorite activity is 4-H and she serves as a vice president; her area of interest is in riding, something she’s been actively doing for the past five years.
Lily’s name regularly appears on the honor roll and she is an active member of the Middlebury Union High School National Honor Society. She serves as a peer leader and says that the position has allowed her to “meet a lot of fun people.” It’s been “fun helping the new ninth-graders adjust to life in high school.” Lily has been a vital part of the MUHS community and we know she will be a welcome addition to whichever college is fortunate enough to have her in the fall!  
Vergennes Union High School is pleased to recognize Ian Gramling as its Student of the Week. Ian lives in Ferrisburgh with his parents, Julie and Phil Gramling. Ian has two younger siblings: Bess, a sophomore at VUHS, and Calvin, a fifth-grader at Ferrisburgh Central School.
Over the past four years at VUHS, Ian has made honor roll all four years and high honors several times. Ian took AP US History in 10th grade. He was accepted to and attended the New England Young Writer’s Conference at Breadloaf in 11th grade and will attend again this year in May. Ian also participated in the Northeastern Open Atlatl Championship at Chimney point both his 11th and 12th grade years. In 11th grade he won silver in the boy’s division.
Ian has participated in many programs at VUHS. He was part of the high school band his 9th and 10th grade years. He participated in the DUO program in 10th grade where he assisted in the Ferrisburgh kindergarten classroom. Ian has been part of the Walden Project his 11th and 12th grade years of high school. He was voted prom king by his peers last year.
Outside of school Ian does all sorts of activities. In 10th grade he volunteered at the Bixby Library. During the summers after 10th and 11th grade he volunteered as an assistant camp counselor at Shelburne Farms. During the summer he works at Boundbrook Farm. He also enjoys historical reenacting, Airsoft, camping, spending time outdoors, playing the flute and bodhran and researching military history.
Ian says this about his high school experience, “I learned how to make something meaningful out of my education and high school experience. I was extremely lucky to have a program where I could learn differently in the woods of Vermont, to be required to think about my place in the world and to voice my opinions and debate with others. I try to be an independent, self-sufficient, humorous and friendly person, who sees things from different points of view.”
Matt Schlein, a teacher in the Walden Project says this about Ian, “Ian brings great joy, humor and fun to his studies. He has a way of throwing himself into his passion for history and the environment and makes the learning experience contagious for everyone. Whether mentoring younger students at Ferrisburgh Elementary or in summer programs at Shelburne Farms or teaching his peers about the Winter War between Finland and Russia, bedecked in period appropriate regalia, he is interested in making learning come alive and making real connections between ideas and actions.”
Following graduation from VUHS, Ian will be attending a four-year college in Vermont or Maine to study early childhood education or military history. He would love to travel to Finland. The faculty, staff and students of VUHS wish Ian 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:
Addison Central Teens
Addison County Economic Development Corporation
Business Telephone Systems
Champlain Valley Plumbing and Heating
Jackman Fuels Inc.
JW DE Ryan
Martin’s Hardware
United Way of Addison County
Vermont Book Shop 

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