‘If you really want to accomplish something, you can do it’ Riana Hain-Gachiri, 13, may have a future in the world of art. The student who began her second year at North Rockford Middle School (NRMS) this week, has earned a full-ride scholarship to Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp and has also had her work chosen for display at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Riana was highly recommended by her art teacher, Rachel Kibbe, who gave the girl a glowing review. “Riana is creative, hard-working and talented,” Kibbe said. “Riana is not only exceptional in terms of her artworks, she is a natural leader and encourager.” Riana was in Kibbe’s painting and sculpture class at NRMS. “I think it is inspiring,” said Riana’s mother, Alison. “If you really want to accomplish something, you can do it.” Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp has been mentoring young artists for 43 years and is known as a prestigious institution. Being accepted and having the school cover the tuition is an incredible achievement. Alison Hain gives credit to the Rockford school system. “It shows what a fine school North Rockford Middle School is,” she said. “Riana just loves her school and her teachers.” Riana’s painting will be displayed at the University of Michigan for the month of July 2010. Carol Tice, art department director at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, said the display will be in an exhibit which is part of the “Experience Blue Lake” celebration, showcasing art by the students of the camp. Kibbe said, “Riana would be a fantastic addition to any art camp. Her kindness, talent and work ethic make her a delightful student.”
North Rockford Middle School
Pearce invites ‘Spirit’ recipient Courtney Fedeson to Lansing State Rep. Tom Pearce welcomed to the Michigan Capitol today Courtney Fedeson of Belmont, one of two top youth volunteers to receive the 14th Annual Prudential Spirit of Community Award. Fedeson, a 12-year-old seventh grader at North Rockford Middle School, was recognized during today’s Legislative session by the full House chamber for her accomplishment and was presented a House of Representatives’ resolution of congratulations. “I congratulate Courtney on her accomplishment and for becoming a role model for other youths who want to make a difference in their communities,” said Pearce, R-Rockford. “I was especially impressed with her maturity and graciousness during our visit to make sure it was understood her Girl Scout troop and other volunteers deserve recognition too. This is a tremendous example of how our entire community embra- ces volunteerism.” Fedeson helped lead her Girl Scout troop to beautify the front entrance of her school. The project included designing, raising funds and installing new landscaping, concrete sidewalks and a brick sculpture base. Fedeson and her parents Brian and Jodi Fedeson also had lunch with Pearce while in Lansing. As a state honoree, Fedeson received $1,000, an engraved silver medallion and she will travel to Washington D.C. in May for national recognition events with all other states’ honorees and the naming of America’s top youth volunteers for 2009. The program was created in 1995 by Prudential Financial in partnership with the National Association of Secondary School Principals to emphasize the importance of service to others and contributing to communities.
A kind-hearted person quick to lend a helping hand James Spencer Staley, age 13, is North Rockford Middle School’s Example in Excellence for 2009. Jamie, son of Eric and Caroline Staley and brother to Katherine and Michael, is a kind-hearted person with a polite and positive manner and always quick to lend a helping hand. He is a dedicated, self-motivated, hardworking student who encourages other students to succeed by volunteering in the Northern Lights peer mentoring program. Jamie has been Student of the Month, on the Principal’s Honor Roll, is a member of the National Honor Society and is taking an honors geometry class. Staff at North Rockford Middle School report that Jamie is kind, helpful and encouraging to everyone he meets and is good at balancing the needs of his school work and extracurricular activities, one of which is theater. He has been in several Civic Theater plays and served as an usher and stage hand too. Jamie has also participated in Rockford middle and high school plays, including the lead role in the production of Oliver. In addition to theater, Jamie is on the Grand Rapids Crew Soccer team, plays basketball, and participates on the school track team. Staff describe Jamie as a “refreshing” student who makes the day brighter for those around him and is truly an Example in Excellence at North Rockford Middle School.