Students of the Week – 4/15/19

Mount Abraham Union High School today recognizes Mhairi McMurray as its Student of the Week. Mhairi is the daughter of Katie McMurray of Middlebury and Ian McMurray of Monkton.
Along with her strong academic studies and honor roll accolades, Mhairi has been very involved with the Mt. Abe community, serving on the Community Council since grade 7, where she is now the moderator, and on the Class Council in grades 9-12. She has also been on the track and field team all four years of high school.
In addition to being an honor roll student, Mhairi also holds down a paid job, waitressing at a retirement center in Shelburne. Her summers involve going on service trips to help communities in need. In the past she has traveled to Washington, D.C., and to Orland, Maine. This year her service trip will take her to New York City.
What spare time she has left is spent going to youth group once a week, playing the piano, and partaking in Girl Scouts. She also enjoys hiking, spending time outdoors, and boxing.
When asked what advice she would give her fellow Mt. Abe students, Mhairi said, “Think positively even when you don’t feel like it!”
After she graduates in June, Mhairi plans to study religion at the University of Vermont.
“Mhairi is constantly busy,” says School Counselor Alan Kamman. “From academics to sports and the performing arts, Mhairi is always involved in something. She is a passionate young woman who devotes all her energy to the task at hand.” Art Teacher Leah Hammond adds, “Mhairi is a natural artist! She excels in both ceramics and jewelry design. Her positive and kind disposition make having her in classes a joy.”
The Mt. Abe community wishes Mhairi all the best in her upcoming studies at UVM and in all her future plans.
Otter Valley Union High School has selected Jacob O’Connell as its latest Student of the Week. Jacob is the son of Brian and Debbie O’Connell of Sudbury. He has a brother who is a freshman in college, a sister who is a junior in high school, a sister who is a sophomore in high school, and a sister who is in 8th grade.
Jacob has a strong commitment to academics and is consistently recognized on the Principal’s List and Honor Roll. He works hard to keep his grades up and to do the best he can to be respectful in class. He has been a member of both the Otter Valley football and lacrosse teams, and when not studying or playing sports he works at the local Subway restaurant. He has been there for two years and works as much as he can.
He loves to fish and to be out on the water surrounded by the natural world. He also enjoys camping, cliff jumping, and pretty much anything that involves being active in the outdoors.
Jacob says, “Throughout high school, I have had the opportunity to meet a lot of great people and have forged strong relationships that will last a lifetime. My advice to other students would be to make friends with everyone. Why have enemies when you can have friends?”
Outdoor educator Josh Hardt says, “Jacob is a young man of integrity. He strives to ensure that his presence makes any situation a better one for all involved. He embraces every challenge with confidence and focus, yet at the conclusion is sure to ask what he could have done better. Here at Moosalamoo we have benefited greatly from his tireless leadership and hard work. I am confident that wherever Jacob’s life takes him our world will be a benefactor.”
Jacob’s hope is to one day have the opportunity to work outdoors and contribute to the world that has given him so much. Everyone at Otter Valley wishes Jacob the best of luck in fulfilling that hope.
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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