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updated: 5/14/2013 11:02 AM

Woodlands Academy Celebrates Community Service

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  • Woodlands Academy senior Colleen Andersen was among those recognized for significant community service.

    Woodlands Academy senior Colleen Andersen was among those recognized for significant community service.
    Woodlands Academy

Woodlands Academy

Did you know that Woodlands Academy of the Sacred Heart students are required to perform 70 hours of community service before they can graduate?

This requirement ties in with goal three of Sacred Heart education: "schools of the Sacred Heart commit themselves to educate to a social awareness which impels to action." Woodlands Academy recognized the tremendous service that its students, faculty and staff have performed throughout the school year during an awards ceremony May 10.

Service comes in many forms -- for one girl, it might be serving in a soup kitchen; for another, it might be building a roof for an impoverished family. Students were told by one of their peers, "We can each profoundly impact the lives of others. Whether you change the world, or simply change the world of one individual, you have acted in the spirit of goal three and have made a difference."

Students gave teacher Mary Ann Salemi of Deerfield a standing ovation for her service. Salemi has been moderator of the Service Club and is retiring after nine years of teaching at Woodlands Academy. They also recognized and gave another standing ovation to teacher Elisa Mascorro who has been the community service coordinator but will have different responsibilities at Woodlands next year.

Alumna Lauren McClusky '08 and her father, Jeff McClusky, also announced the winners of the Nelarusky Award: Isabella Alvarez of Lake Forest and Colleen Andersen of Lake Bluff. Alvarez serves at Hope Clinic International and translates for American doctors to help facilitate the language barrier of those in need. Andersen co-founded the KidsUganda Youth Board. The organization supports a husband and wife team who has a school in Uganda. The hope is to create a better future in Uganda by educating youth.

Woodlands Academy freshmen need to do 10 hours of service while all other students need to do 20 hours each school year.

Students recognized for doing more than 50 hours beyond the required hours during the past year included:

Freshman Eleanore van Marwijk Kooy (Lake Barrington)

Sophomores Laura Bartusiak (Lake Forest) and Sofia Kubicek (Lake Forest)

Juniors Anna Fuente (Waukegan), Abigail Kendall (Evanston) and Leigh Ketelsen (Lincolnshire)

Seniors Isabella Alvarez (Lake Forest), Emily Bartusiak (Lake Forest), Caitlin McCarthy (Winnetka) and Yimin Zhang, China