The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

School Columnists

January 19, 2012

Conneaut NHS to host Valentine's Day dance

CONNEAUT — Conneaut High School's chapter of the National Honor Society is up and running with its new adviser, Emily Wacker.

Mrs. Wacker attended the University of Mount Union where she majored in theater and mass-media. She graduated from Mount Union in 2000 and received a degree in education from Edinboro University in Pennsylvania. She started as a substitute teacher with the Conneaut Area City School District in 2001. She was permanently hired as an English teacher at Conneaut High School in 2006, and now she teaches the media production class, along with various English and drama literature classes.

Mrs. Wacker is not only CHS National Honor Society adviser, but she is also the adviser of Conneaut High School's Thespian Troop, something that she loves. They are the ones responsible for all of the high school's entertaining drama productions.

When asked to describe the National Honor Society in one sentence, Mrs. Wacker replied, "NHS is a service organization for students who excel in leadership, academics and volunteerism."

It is a great honor to be inducted into the National Honor Society, and it is not easy. Members must maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or higher, along with many other strict requirements. If they do not, they may be faced with dismissal from the society.

So far this year, the NHS has completed quite a few community service projects, and the year is far from over.

Every school year, the National Honor Society hosts two bloodmobile drives at CHS. Usually there is one in the fall and one in the spring. This past fall, Conneaut High School exceeded its goal of 50 pints of blood to be donated to the drive. This means that one CHS student will have the opportunity to receive a $500 scholarship. Thank you to all students and staff who donated!

During the holiday season, members from NHS volunteered their time ringing the Salvation Army bell for their annual Red Kettle collections. Some of the members really enjoyed themselves, singing Christmas carols and spreading the holiday cheer!

Also in December, Conneaut High School had the annual "Food Wars" food drive. NHS helped out by collecting the food items from homeroom classes and then counting them. By winter break, CHS had collected more than 1,700 canned goods for the Conneaut Food Pantry. The junior class came out on top and won the "Food Wars." Later this school year, the juniors will be receiving a class party for their hard work. That really shows some Spartan pride — go juniors!

On Jan. 13, Conneaut hosted Edgewood's boys’ basketball team at Garcia Gymnasium. It was Cancer Awareness Night so NHS members made and sold baked goods and cancer awareness bracelets. The proceeds will be donated to various cancer awareness and research organizations. Students and fans were also encouraged to wear pink for a "PINK-out" supporting breast cancer awareness.

Mrs. Wacker is already planning service projects for the rest of the school year including collecting supplies for the Ashtabula County Animal Protective League and visiting residents at the Villa on the Lake during the non-holiday seasons to cheer them up when they don't normally get many visitors. But that's not all, there is still much, much more before this year is over.

The National Honor Society will also be holding some fund-raisers in the next few months to raise money for their annual trip. Members will be selling gourmet cookie dough, candy bars and fruit snacks as a healthier alternative.

On Feb. 16 in Garcia Gymnasium, NHS will be holding a Valentine's Day Dance. The proceeds from the dance will go toward funding the trip. They are considering having a Valentine's Day Court nominated, with a Valentine's Day queen being crowned.

This year's trip has been planned very carefully by Mrs. Wacker. She is putting a lot of time and hard work into organizing everything so that it is a success. She has planned this year's trip for New Orleans, La. It is her personal focus, she says, to get the students to appreciate the different cultural aspects of our country and world. She said New Orleans is a place that has a rich, historical background and has overcome a terrible tragedy, and that is why she thinks that New Orleans will be a great experience for the members, and a treat for all their hard work throughout the year. The trip is planned for May.

We would like to send out a special "thank you!" to Mrs. Wacker for all that she does for our school and community.

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