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posted: 5/17/2013 1:44 PM

Youths honored, scholarships awarded in Elk Grove ceremony

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Submitted by District 59

The Community Character Coalition and the Village of Elk Grove Village recognized more than 150 area youth for their community service work and awarded Fallen Soldier Memorial Scholarships to three area high school seniors at a ceremony last week.

Youth groups and individuals were recognized for displaying the Pillar of Citizenship, which is one of the Six Pillars of the Character Counts! Coalition. The scholarship recipients were judged on their community service activities and their essays on citizenship.

The youth groups and individuals provided displays presenting their service projects, available for public viewing in the lower level of the village hall prior to the start of the village board meeting. At the meeting, Curt Hansen, president of the Community Character Coalition, presented $1,500 scholarships to Faith Meitzler, David Vitale and Kaley Wendorf.

Meitzler, a senior at Conant High School in Hoffman Estates, impressed the scholarship selection committee with her essay that spoke of seizing every opportunity to serve and to be a role model. She plans to attend Olivet Nazarene University and study engineering/medicine.

Vitale, a senior at St. Viator High School in Arlington Heights, was selected for his thoughts on citizenship, asserting that service raises the standard in an organization and a community. It seeks a need and it meets it. He lived up to this belief, for his service activities went far beyond what was required. He plans to attend Marquette University, where he will study biomedical engineering.

Kaley Wendorf, a senior at Elk Grove High School, impressed the selection committee with her statement that empathy is what makes a good citizen; that works can do good, but actions done from the heart can change the world. She plans to attend Northwestern University to study biomedical engineering.

Eleven youth service groups and one individual were recognized for their service projects. Projects included Jump Rope for the Heart, Salvation Army bell ringing, food drives and volunteering at food pantries, charity walks, research into and promotion of community health and fitness, clothing drives, church mission trips, major recycling events, an individual lemonade stand to collect school supplies for the needy, and promoting safe driving in school zones.

The following groups and/or individuals were recognized:

• Clearmont Girl Scouts

• Elk Grove Leo Club

• Forest View School Student Senate

• Girl Scout Troop 41293-Link School

• Green Grens

• Izzy Ruiz Lemonade Stand

• Mead Junior High Rotary

• Mead Junior High Interact Club

• Queen of the Rosary Student Council

• Ridge Family Center for Learning

• Elk Grove Township Elementary School District 59 TDP Health & Fitness Project

• St. Julian Youth Group "AfterMass"

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