STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: COVID-19 EDITION
During school closures, students at Lincoln High School took to the drawing board to express their interpretation of these uncertain times. For many high school students, they lost what would be for many, the most memorable times in their young adult lives.The collection of artwork below is remarkable and their talents should be shared to all.
Spring weather is in the air and so is kindness at Phoenix High School. A group of 11 Key Club students stand in the spotlight this month for their selfless acts. Students came together with the help of one of our school nurses, as well as local volunteer organizations to provide a clothes closet for students in need. The team is still hard at work coming up with a business model that will sustain a clothes closet to last throughout the school year. High school students will have access to professional wear for an interview or something nice to wear to a school dance. Personal hygiene products and school supplies will be offered as well. For the students facilitating this act of kindness, it is more than just a school project - it is helping them see the bigger picture and helping others in need. In addition to gaining new perspectives, they are getting real world experience creating a business plan. It is their goal to have this fully operational by the start of next school year.
Little Miss Hayley Heath takes on the world…well at least this month’s Student Spotlight! Hayley is a talented third grade student in the district’s GATE Program at First Street Elementary. Outside of her academics, her time is spent practicing ballet and twirling baton.
Hayley started in ballet at just 5 years old and is now a student of Studio 65 in Rocklin. She dances up to six hours every week and is also a member of the Placer Theater Ballet. According to Hayley’s ballet instructor, Tamu Ortenzio, “Hayley is a gifted ballet student with exceptional natural ability, focus and determination. She is committed, coachable and always ready to face challenges in her training. In this art form, as in life, attitude and mindset are the key to success. Hayley is not only talented, but has an amazingly positive outlook for someone so young. She’s an absolute joy to work with and I can’t wait to see all the incredible accomplishments she will achieve in dance.”
If you happen to take a trip up to Auburn to watch the Placer Theater Ballet’s annual ‘Nutcracker’ performance during the holidays, you might spot Hayley. She’s been in solo roles for the past three years. They are currently working on their spring performance of Snow White. Hayley was casted as one of the seven dwarfs.
When Hayley is not doing ballet, she practices and competes in baton twirling competitions. When speaking with Hayley about baton twirling, her eyes light up. She has aspirations to be a professional one day. Her coaches, Mark and Ella Nash, share the same aspirations for Hayley. Both Mark and Ella Nash run Nash Twirling Academy based here in Lincoln. Mark Nash is an 8-time Men’s World Baton Twirling Champion, while Ella also holds several National and World Championship titles. Mark and Ella comment on Hayley’s abilities, “Hayley is an amazing talent. She has all of the ingredients to be a champion: flexibility, strength, dexterity and commitment! We love training her and can’t wait to see her progress!” With such determination at young age, Hayley is on the path toward success in whatever she puts her mind to!
These two boys taking on our January Student Spotlight are all brain and game when it comes to their favorite hobby. Nolan Radovich and Finley Erickson are two fifth grade students who came together and founded the school’s first student-run Chess Club. The two started playing chess a couple years ago during rainy-day recess. The game’s popularity grew at the school as the boys got their friends interested. Last year, the two came together and wrote a formal proposal to present to their Principal, Ms. Castillo. After Ms. Castillo accepted their proposal, the boys took to their own marketing plan. With the help of a family member, Nolan created appealing posters to place around campus. Finley took the lead on word of mouth advertising. The boy’s understanding for advertising and the business side of running a school club was quite impressive. The club currently meets once a week and the two co-leaders host a couple tournaments a year, some with grand prizes for the winners!
Their talents stretch far beyond their chess skills when asked about their lives outside of fifth grade. Finley has a true passion for robotics. He participates in the Lincoln High School Robotics Program, offered to elementary and middle school students. The team meets once a week; they build, program and operate the robots, competing against one another, as well as other neighboring programs. Finley has a knack for the programming side of things and mentions how much he enjoys the challenge.
Nolan’s extracurricular activities are those many eleven year old boys don’t experience. Currently, Nolan is taking flying lessons through our Lincoln Airport. He takes lessons with an instructor and is working toward getting his pilot’s license, with future plans of being a pilot in the Air Force. It is quite possible Nolan will have enough hours under his belt to get his pilot license around the same time as his driver’s license.
There is no doubt this dynamic duo is off to great start to a successful future! According to Nolan, he has aspirations for him and Finley to ‘become the next Elon Musk’. Finley will do the building and programming and Nolan will handle the operating!
Anyone up for a swim? Although the weather is getting cooler, this month’s Student Spotlight doesn’t seem to mind. It’s quite possible Nolan Johnson, Lincoln High School Junior by day, fish by night, will make history by the time he graduates. Nolan is a varsity swimmer who’s racked up impressive accolades since stepping foot onto the LHS campus.
Nolan's name appears under several LHS swim records, and he hasn’t even competed as a junior yet. While Lincoln High School does not have an aquatic center, our dear McBean pool has been holding strong to support our successful swimmers, even if they have to make a few more turns than in a typical race.
Despite Nolan’s humble manner and apathy for the spotlight, he deserves every bit of recognition. Nolan is an ‘A’ student, swims two to three hours per day, six days a week, and also finds time to hold down a job.
Outside of the regular swim season, Nolan practices with his USA Club team, which he’s been a member of since he was in middle school. Not only has this talented swimmer earned several Scholar-Athlete Awards, he’s qualified for the Junior Olympics as a freshman and sophomore.
In early December, the family traveled to Arizona State University to compete in a national qualifying event. Nolan swam in the presence of ASU’s swim coach, who happened to coach Michael Phelps . . . maybe you’ve heard of him.
It’s no doubt his mom, Cathy, beams when speaking about her boy, mentioning not only his honorable awards, but more so his kind, humble character. Nolan has aspirations to swim in college, but wants to ensure his education comes first.
A bright-eyed, determined second grade student takes the stage for our November Student Spotlight. Shannon Worthey needs no introduction in her own circle, but the rest of us were shocked to hear how Shannon spends her extracurricular time. Shannon has been practicing Irish Dance for the past three years. Her passion for Irish Dance stems from her debut on the living room floor at just 2 years old when she watched the entire three-hour Riverdance video, following along the entire time. Holding Shannon’s attention was no feat for this busy girl, but she was so mesmerized by the dancing, her curiosity did not wander.
Mom, Ashley Worthey, remembers being shocked how she actually looked like she knew what she was doing at just two years old. Shannon now attends classes at the McKeever’s School of Irish Dance, located in the E. Claire Raley Studios for the Performing Arts in Sacramento. Her instructor, who Miss Shannon is quite fond of, danced and toured with Riverdance prior to opening her own dance studio. It is apparent Shannon truly looks up to her instruction, with aspirations to dance as she does. Shannon has competed in her own feisannas, or Irish dance competitions, and has placed either first or second in each one, currently holding three first place metals in her possession. In addition to competitions, she has performed for Mayor Steinberg, as well as multiple school talent shows. When asking Shannon how dancing makes her feel, her enamored response was, “HAPPY!” Her passion for Irish dancing sparkles in her eyes and her determination to ‘never give up’ will take her far in life.
During the summer of 2019, a group of Lincoln High School students had the honor of attending the annual American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Summer Advocacy Institute in Washington DC. These 9 young women participated in a quickly growing event that’s sparked the interest of many high school students across America. They participated in various seminars, team building exercises and several tours of museums and historical monuments. After one seminar, they had the opportunity to ask a congress representative a few questions and take a photo with them. One student in particular, Hannah Villanueva spoke highly of her experiences, mentioning passionate and emotional moments for many. She was able to visit the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC, where her great uncle’s name is etched in the wall for his services.
While surrounded by other passionate individuals, Hannah felt inspired to be a positive influence in her local community. Hannah plans to follow in her great uncles footsteps and become a trauma surgeon for the US Military. The group of students ended their memorable trip with a ball at the National Art Gallery, which the organization rented out the entire venue to end in celebration. It was an experience these 9 young women will never forget.
We are kicking off the school year with a whopper of a student spotlight - highlighting not just one student, but three! Three sisters have quite the tight schedule outside of their regular school day. Six-year-old Emeliann Grandin, nine-year-old Charlotte Grandin, and eleven-year-old Lily Grandin are all chasing that checkered flag when they aren't at school. Emeliann and Charlotte both attend Carlin C. Coppin, while Lily is in her first year at Glen Edwards Middle School. The racing trio all race quarter midget racecars in different motor classes. Emeliann races in the novice (or beginner) division with a speed restricted motor. The older sisters are both racing the senior Honda motor with no speed restrictions. The girls race during the nine-month long season, racing 20-30 races within that time. The family primarily races in the Northern California Area, with a few major races across the country. Over Thanksgiving, these racing rockstars head to Las Vegas to compete against over 350 cars. When asking father, Carl, what sparked their interest in racecar driving, he mentioned their mom, Sue, grew up around drag racing. His biggest motivation to get the girls involved was the driving experience they would have under their belts, once it came time to get behind the wheel of a daily driver.
When the family isn't out on the racetrack, all three girls are involved in 4H. In addition, Emeliann and Charlotte play softball (Charlotte is on the All-Star Team) and Lily plays waterpolo. All three girls maintain their schoolwork and still have time for their family and fun! These girls are definitely on the right track for a bright future!