Students of the Week – 2/18/2019

he 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.
Congratulations to Sawyer Forbes, daughter of Kimberly and Michael Forbes of Bristol, who is the latest Student of the Week at Mount Abraham Union High School. Her sister Riley is a junior in college and her brother Sam is a sophomore at Mt. Abe.
A gifted student, Sawyer has been on the honor roll each semester of her high school career, achieving highest honors. She is currently enrolled in AP Biology and AP Studio Arts. Last year she took AP Calculus as well as a Dual Enrollment college course focusing on Plant Biology.
Sawyer has been a member of Mt. Abe’s field hockey team all four years of high school. She is also a part of the Literary Magazine club and has been since the spring of her 9th-grade year. This year she also took part in the fall musical.
She has worked at the Lower Notch Berry Farm for three years and will continue to work there this coming summer from July to the end of August. She has volunteered for the last two years at Green Mountain Conservation Camp (GMCC). She spent one week volunteering during her first summer and last summer she spent three weeks there. She will volunteer at GMCC this summer as well. There she will complete work projects and help in the classroom, teaching campers about nature and conservation.
Sawyer enjoys arts and crafts, hiking, spending time with her family, and really anything that allows her to spend time outdoors.
When asked about high school, Sawyer says, “I would say that you just have to live for the moment in general life and in school. Make sure to take time for yourself, whether that be reading your favorite book, hanging out with your friends, or going on a walk. It is so easy to get consumed by school and work, but it is really important to take a breath every now and again and just do something for you.”
Sawyer plans to attend the University of Vermont in the fall of 2019, where she hopes to pursue a dual degree in Animal Sciences and Wildlife Biology and Fisheries.
Her advisor Vicki Bronson says, “Sawyer Forbes is an athlete, an artist, and a scholar. She is a delight in advisory, and never fails to impress me with her artistic talent and her aptitude in math and science.” AP Art teacher Elise Cleary adds, “Sawyer shows an incredible passion for learning and finds joy in exploring all of the mysteries that life has to offer. She has the heart of an artist and the brain of a scientist. Sawyer is curious, creative, discriminating and inquisitive. As an artist, Sawyer’s authentic creativity results in deeply felt and expressive images, most often including elements from the natural world.”
The Mt. Abe community wishes Sawyer all the best in her future plans.
Otter Valley Union High School has named Michael Bedard as its latest Student of the Week. Michael is the son of Jody Ketcham of Sudbury. Both of his sisters (ages 22 and 23) live in Massachusetts and run their own small business making personalized crafts.
Michael was inducted into the National Honor Society in his 11th grade year and that is one of his biggest high school accomplishments. While he doesn’t have a lot of time or opportunities to complete community service, he has worked to tutor a 7th-grade student and bring their math grade up to an 80 in their final exam for the class.
Michael has been playing golf since 9th grade and he worked behind the scenes of the musical this past fall as a stagehand.
He works in Brandon at the Hannaford supermarket in the produce department and also interns at the Otter Valley IT department for 80 minutes daily.
In his spare time Michael enjoys reading, playing video games and hanging out with friends outside of school. He also enjoys writing fantasy stories and scenarios.
 “I have learned from my time in high school that you should get your work done ahead of time!” he says. “If you wait too long, you only get a few hours to complete your assignments and turn in lower quality work.”
Teacher Larry Gerrior says, “Michael is a kind, compassionate, intelligent, and strong person who has a clear sense of direction and purpose. His resilience, positivity, and humor are especially astounding given any challenge life has put in his path.” Teacher Lisa King adds, “Michael takes ownership of his learning by participating in Governor’s Institute workshops and an IT internship. He is reliable and responsible, and always willing to lend a hand to others in need.”
Michael has been accepted at and plans on attending Champlain College, where he will study Digital Forensics.
The faculty, staff and students at Otter Valley wish Michael all the best as he leaves high school.
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 $5 gift certificate to Route 7 Sandwich Co. Students of the Week from all area high schools will receive a gift certificate from Vermont Book Shop.
With support from:
Barash Mediation Services
Bourdon Insurance Agency
Business Telephone Systems
Champlain Valley Plumbing & Heating
Countryside Carpet & Paint
Jackman Fuels, Inc.
J.W. & D.E. Ryan
NFP Insurance Benefits & Wealth Management
Peak View Eye Care
Route 7 South Sandwich Company
United Way of Addison County
Vermont Book Shop

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