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The following students have been selected as the Fredericksburg Optimist Club's Students of the Month for November.
Nathaniel David Jenkins, son of Labravia and Burvin Jenkins, was selected at James Monroe High School. He is a member of the National Honor Society, defensive captain for the lacrosse team and participates in marching band, as bass drum section leader his junior year and drum major his senior year.
Nathaniel was named defensive player of the year for lacrosse and earned second-place drum major in two competitions. He volunteers at the Fredericksburg Regional SPCA and was an assistant in commonwealth's attorney and court clerk campaigns. He plans to attend a four-year college or university and then go on to veterinarian school.
Simeon Khan, son of retired Col. Mohammed and Lisa Khan was selected at Mountain View High School. Simeon is the treasurer for the senior class, captain of the varsity football team and was selected as Mountain View High School's 2013 nominee for the Harry F. Byrd Leadership Award. He attended the 2012 Virginia Boys State, as well as the United States Military Academy at West Point Summer Leaders Seminar. In the community, Simeon leads a Toys for Tots donation drive and serves as a key contributor to the Adopt-a-Family Program. He is an avid competitive-level trap and skeet shotgun sportsman, a member of the Model U.N. Delegation, and served as the Secretary of Defense at the American University National Student Leadership Conference for Intelligence and National Security.
Simeon aspires to attend the United States Military Academy at West Point, or the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis, receive a Bachelor of Science degree and serve his country as an officer in the armed forces.
Breshena Crosby, daughter of Byron and Bridgette Crosby, was selected at Fredericksburg Christian School. She comes from a military family. Both of her parents served in the U.S. Air Force and are now disabled veterans.
Breshena has earned two sportsmanship awards in volleyball, nine academic subject achievement awards and an ACSI Distinguished Student award. She is also involved with the drama department and has been in six school plays. Breshena attended Virginia Girls State in June 2012. She is also vice president of her school's chapter of the National Honor Society.
Breshena plans to attend college next fall and study theater. After college, she hopes to begin her acting career in New York on Broadway.
Jack Patrick Farnam, son of John Patrick Farnam and KathyJean Farnam, was selected at North Stafford High School. He is the proud son of a Marine. His dad is currently stationed in Miramar, Ca., as the base commander of Air Station Miramar. Jack has stayed in Stafford to finish high school at North Stafford, where he is currently in the top 10 percent of his class. He says, "It's difficult being so far from my father, but I know his work is important and, as a member of a military family, I realize it requires sacrifice." Jack is a Cadet Lt. Col. in JROTC and is the commander of his unit. He spends between 1 and two hours after school each day working with his cadets on drill, leadership and teamwork.
He has been inducted into the National Honor Society and he is also a black belt in American tae kwon do at the Power Kix Martial Arts Studio in Stafford. He volunteers there once a week as a teacher's assistant for the Special Olympics program. He is also a member of the Power Kix Competitive Fighting Team, which is ranked first in the nation for katas and second for point sparring. He has competed in the national championships four times and took two gold medals in 2011. Jack is a senior and is taking 5 AP classes. He intends to go to college at UC Irvine to pursue a career in law, possibly in the military as an officer in the JAG Corps.
Kirsten Garza, daughter of Gilbert and Camille Garza, was selected at Colonial Forge High School. She is president of the National Honor Society, co-vice president of the Key Club, captain of the Club Swim Team and is active in Spanish Club, National Spanish Honor Society, 4:12 Student Ministry, swim team and church youth group. She is working on EMT certification and is a member of the Healthcare Explorer Program at Mary Washington Hospital.
Kirsten received the William & Mary Leadership Award, and awards in AP Chemistry, Math Analysis, Anatomy and Physiology, Honors Chemistry, Sports Marketing and Spanish II. She was named Junior Class Female Student of the Year, Most Outstanding Rookie for Swimming, and received four varsity letters for swimming. She was named Colonial Forge Student Representative to the county Round Table meeting.
Kirsten volunteers at her church, serving in the nursery every Sunday, volunteering during vacation Bible school, and stuffing backpacks for less-fortunate children. She is a member of her church youth group and went on a mission trip gleaning vegetables for the hungry. Kirsten also volunteers occasionally at the homeless shelter and helps keeping time at area swim meets. She plans to attend a four-year university, where she will enroll in nursing school and become a nurse practitioner.
Natalie Morgan, daughter of Richard and Melissa Morgan, was selected at Brooke Point High School. She participates in varsity field hockey, Amnesty Club, Young Life, Catholic Youth Organization and Top Hawks. She is organizing a Polar Plunge team for the school as a fundraiser for Special Olympics.
Natalie received an Academic Honors award, and was recognized for outstanding achievement in IB Spanish I, IB English II, and was selected for the Virginia Governor's Foreign Language Academy in Spanish.
She is a junior volunteer at Stafford Hospital and is a volunteer coach for Special Olympics. Natalie plans to attend the College of William & Mary and receive a bachelor's degree in international relations.
The following student was selected as the Student of the Month for November at Stafford High School.
Kinjal H. Thakkar is the daughter of Hitendra and Priti Thakkar. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Key Club, Link Crew and is president of the Interact Club. She has been on the distinguished honor roll since 2009 and is ranked in the top 7 percent of her class, with a 4.2 GPA.
Kinjal has volunteered more than 100 hours at Spotsylvania Regional Medical Center, and plays county soccer. She also participated in the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards Camp. She plans to go to college next fall to major in biology, and then go to medical school to become a pediatrician.
The following students have been selected as the King George Optimist Club's Students of the Month for November at King George High School.
Guadalupe Mejia, in 10th grade, was nominated by Mrs. Grigsby, who reports that "Lupe is an extraordinary young woman who works diligently in her coursework to ensure a level of excellence in her academics. She asks questions when she needs material explained further, and she is always willing to help her peers if they are struggling. She is a top-notch student in biology and earned A/B Honor Roll for the first marking period. Her demeanor is always pleasant, polite and respectful. She is also a member of the NJROTC and holds the rank of Seaman Apprentice."
Andy Snyder, a senior, was nominated by Mrs. Fox, who writes, "Andy Snyder is tutoring students in lower-level courses, as well. He is currently taking BC Calculus as an independent study course. He works on it while I teach geometry to the class and then saves his questions that he can't figure out until I am available. He is learning much of the material on his own. He is also very active outside of school and maintains a high GPA."
--Information for Students of the Month is compiled by Peggy Carlson, pcarlson@freelance