Seventy-five Northdale Middle School students were recognized for their achievements during the school year at the ninth annual People’s Choice Awards ceremony April 25.
There were two types of honors – Exceptional Awards and the People’s Choice Awards.
The exceptional awards were given to students for their success in various activities – archery, Destination Imagination, district honors band, district honors orchestra, district math league, kaleidoscope cover, Minnesota Fuel Up to Play 60 ambassador, geography bee winner, pacer record, regional science fair, math contest, spelling bee winner, track and field cross country championship qualifier and Youth for Change.
For a People’s Choice Award, students were nominated by a staff member at the school.
Forty-nine of those students were recognized for academic behavior, outstanding character, citizenship, school spirit and leadership.
The People’s Choice Awards are part of the school’s Renaissance Program.
According to Principal Laurie Jacklitch, Renaissance is an approach to education that encourages students to excel in academics, demonstrate positive behavior and achieve their goals.
It recognizes educators as valued professionals and increases involvement of parents and the community, including local businesses who support the program, Jacklitch said.
“It is a concept of community both within the school and outside its walls,” she said.
Jacklitch recognized the support of the Fridley Walmart store, which, she said, had adopted Northdale Middle School and also provided two bicycles and electronics items as prizes for the raffle during the awards ceremony.
The 75 students who received awards at the April 25 ceremony were selected from a school population of 1,200 and were “special,” Jacklitch said.
“We want to make these achievements valued by students,” she said.
According to eighth-grade teacher Laura McQuiston, one of the emcees along with Julie Klund-Schubert, assistant principal, the students being honored at the People’s Choice Awards ceremony have the “spirit, drive and energy that makes me want to come to work every day.”
Math teacher Sara Peterson coordinates the Renaissance Program with fellow teacher Chris Dahl.
Besides the annual People’s Choice Awards ceremony, the Renaissance Program recognizes students at the end of trimesters as well as mid-trimesters with special lunches for such achievements as good grades or having no behavior issues, for example, Peterson said.
Cake and punch were served before the awards ceremony.
Northdale Middle School choir students performed during the social and also sang the national anthem.
People’s Choice Award winners were:
Sixth grade: Tyler Holm, De’Jarius Gurley, Jonathan Koenig, Katie Tschida, Monique Gilligan, Brianna Bixby, James Oakley, Dakota Mensch, Reagan McCurnin, Peter Giese, Michelle Vang, Ellen Everhart and Toufong Yang.
Seventh grade: Leyna Do, Jordan Devries, Abbrielle Jones, Lauren Ismail, Peter Ongera, Courtney Larson, Madison Robideau, Greta Schnur, Alexandra Whalen, Spencer Meyers and Allison Birr.
Eighth grade: Austin Smith, John Sanislo, Kenneth Nordstrom, Brad Malmer, Natasha Jegeda, Cody Vaale, Fernando Camillo, Diana Ongera, Julia Robinson, Stephanie Chhaturam, Nicole Cottew, Amera Hassan, Yusuf Abdul-Rahman, Stephanie Parrow, Joshua Stabelski, Kaylie Hulegaard, Jessica Sherlock, Carmenn Betts, Sara Harken, Arifa Ali, Israel “Gloria” Olabimpe, Tanzania Guy, Kenneth Nordstrom and Bethany Fjeld.
Students earning Exceptional Awards included John Sanislo, Mackenzie Allen, Olivia Carlson, Catherine Lewis, Alison Kienholz, Jennah Merrell, Johanna Rossow, Hunter Rust, Emma Symanski, Ciera Bieniek, Allison Birr, Emily Everhart, Madison Pender, Lyric Thompson, Josiah Gould, James Christner, Amera Hassan, Ensar Smailagic, Kieran Tetter, Timothy Keran, Jonathan Ababiy, Sarah Olson, Benjamin Olson, Abbrielle Jones, Owen Kavie, Catherine Getty, Kenneth Truong, Samuel Reiten, Alec Sonquist, Vishal Birkebak, Ethan Flaa, Alexander Frankki, Milkessa Gaga, Joel Palomino-Garcia, Abraham Joseph, Bill Kourchj, Daymin Lang, Brendan Tetter and Tyler Young.
Peter Bodley is at email@example.com