School Notes: Rotary Club Seeks Student Speeches

Valley News Staff Writer
Monday, November 20, 2017

Calling all orators: The Cohase Rotary Club is inviting high school students in the northern reaches of the Upper Valley to compete in its annual speech contest in early 2018.

The club asks teachers in the region, including those at Rivendell Academy, Oxbow High School, Blue Mountain Union High School and Woodsville High School, to stage the preliminary round of the contest in their classrooms, and to send the top five finishers from each school to the club’s Jan. 16 meeting to deliver their speeches.

The winner of the Cohase contest would receive $100 and advance to the regional Rotary competition on March 14. The winner of the regional meet would receive $150 and move on to the district contest on April 14. The district winner, along with receiving $250, would qualify for the New Hampshire contest on May 5 at the Mount Washington Hotel.

The topic of each speech, which should run five minutes, is how a citizen can “make a difference” following Rotary’s four-part test of ethics in business and community service:

Is it the truth?

Is it fair to all concerned?

Will it build good will and better friendships?

Will it be beneficial to all concerned?

Teachers interested in holding preliminary contests in their classrooms are encouraged to email Monique Priestley at mepriestley@gmail.com. To learn more, visit cohaserotary.org.

Educator Excellence

Know a teacher who deserves recognition beyond an apple on the desk? The Vermont Agency of Education is inviting students, their parents and colleagues of educators to post stories about their favorite classroom mentors on the agency’s social-media sites.

Participants with kudos to share can email a paragraph and a photograph to Haley Jones at haley.jones@vermont.gov. The agency will then choose submissions to post on its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.


The Hanover Consumer Cooperative Society is offering scholarships to Upper Valley residents and organizations aiming to promote cooperative enterprises through continuing education, academic research and business development.

Dec. 1 is the deadline to submit applications for awards of between $500 and $2,500 from the new Gerstenberger Scholarship Fund and Community Project Grants. To learn more, visit coopfoodstore.coop/gerstenberger-scholarship-fund.

On Stage

Crossroads Middle School sixth-grader Amica Lansigan will be the featured violin soloist during the New Hampshire Music Festival’s Link-Up Concert at Plymouth State University on March 15. Lansigan is a resident of Hanover.

Haverhill resident Chris Sarkis played the role of Marco in the Crane Opera Ensemble and Orchestra’s production of Puccini’s opera Gianni Schicchi last weekend at the State University of New York at Potsdam. The university recently awarded its Cassie Davino Memorial Scholarship and its SUNY-Potsdam Freshman Scholarship to Sarkis, who is majoring in music education.

The Write Stuff

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is inviting Vermont high school students to write essays for his annual State of the Union contest.

Jan. 10 is the deadline to enter the contest, in which the writers are asked to describe, in 250 to 500 words, the problems they believe are the most pressing facing the United States, and how they would go about solving them. To learn more, visit sanders.senate.gov or call 800-339-9834 or email katarina_lisaius@sanders.senate.gov.

The Congressional Record will archive the essays of the finalists. In 2017, Hartford High School freshman A.J. DeFelice placed third among Vermont students, citing climate change, treatment of immigrants and income inequality as the country’s most pressing issues.

College Honors

Hanover resident Miza Mwanza recently was inducted into St. Lawrence University’s chapter of Pi Mu Epsilon, the national mathematics honor society. Mwanza is a senior majoring in math.

The St. Lawrence University chapter of the Psi Chi honor society for students in psychology-related studies recently inducted Hanover resident Rachel Boghosian and Braintree, Vt., resident Cole Poulin.

Boghosian, a senior majoring in psychology at the northern New York school, is a graduate of Hanover High School. Poulin, a junior majoring in neuroscience, graduated from Randolph Union High School. The students qualified for the honor society by maintaining grade-point averages of at least 3.3 out of a possible 4.0 in all subjects, and by ranking in the top 35 percent of their classes.

High School Honors

Citing his self-motivation and ability to balance school, work, sports and community service, Lebanon High School recently named Keelan Carey as its student of the month for November.

The school’s announcement notes that Carey is “patient with peers who struggle socially. It comes naturally to Keelan to be respectful, caring and a leveling presence to all.”

David Corriveau can be reached at dcorriveau@vnews.com and at 603-727-3304.

Education-related news and announcements also can be sent to schoolnotes@vnews.com.