The Exchange Club of Sebastian is honored to present their March Students of the Month: Grace DeVarney of Sebastian Charter Junior High School, Isaiah Cummings of Sebastian River Middle School, Kathryn Bender of Storm Grove Middle School, and Lawrence Kim & Morgan Ransom of Sebastian River High School.
The Young Citizenship Award honors a student each month from each of our local middle and junior high schools, and the Youth of the Month Award honors two students each month from our local high school who demonstrates good citizenship at school and home.
These programs are designed to recognize and encourage honest, hardworking, helpful, and fair students. These students cooperate with teachers and parents and help when a job needs to be done. In practice, these awards give classroom teachers an effective tool to motivate promising students. It also seeks to prove to these students that good citizenship counts and show them their conduct and attitude is noticed, appreciated, and rewarded.
Young Citizenship Award Winners for March
Grace DeVarney takes advanced and high school courses, all while maintaining straight A’s. Not only is she an exceptional student, but Grace is also an active member of her school community. She is a member of the Excel Club and volunteers her time before, during, and after school. Grace encompasses character traits—respect, responsibility, caring, trustworthiness, citizenship, fairness – Encompassing them all. When met with a challenge, Grace is determined to succeed and meet any goal she has set for herself. She is a model citizen with a curious mind, sweet disposition, and kind heart. She has an extremely bright future ahead of her. If you engage Grace in conversation, you’ll sense genuine compassion in her bright eyes and find Grace is curious, reflective, and passionate about school and life.
Kathryn Bender is a diligent, all-around great student who is humble, amenable, always a pleasure, and willing to help others. She is a Storm Grove’s Florida Future Educators of America Club member and loves to play beach volleyball. In accepting her award, she thanked Sebastian Exchange Club, her friends, teachers, and family for always being there for her and pushing her to be who she is today.
Isaiah Cummings is an excellent and very mature student who is highly cooperative and hardworking. Moreover, his academic performance stands at the top of Sebastian River Middle School’s 8th-grade class. He likes to participate eloquently in class discussions and provides to be a great role model for other students to emulate. Isaiah will ask questions and has the determination to work through complex content. He knows how to balance the rigors of his advanced classes with the rigors of his extracurricular activities. Not only is Isaiah a member of the IB program at Sebastian River Middle School, but he’s also a 3-year member of the SRMS Band, a 3-year member of the SRMS Boys’ Basketball team (having made the team as a 6th grader, and a member of the Indians Recreational Football Team.
Youth of the Month Award
The Youth of the Month Award recognizes hardworking high school students who attain high levels of scholastic achievement, community involvement, and leadership. This proven program rewards outstanding young people and incentivizes other youngsters to strive for equally high levels of achievement.
Morgan Ransom is an IB Diploma Candidate ranked 16th in her class. She is the Sebastian River High School National Honor Society’s treasurer and an Honors Graduate with a Merit Diploma Designation who has been accepted into the Freshman Admit Program (FAN) Program at the University of North Florida, an extremely competitive nursing program. Morgan assisted Harbor Branch (Florida Atlantic University) in helping the Indian River Land Trust figure out the best way to conserve and care for the native Giant Blue Crab. She was in their Junior Scientist Program in 2021-22. Morgan is a member of the SRHS Excel Club and a Varsity Athlete in Weightlifting and Lacrosse. She has volunteered in beach cleanups, has been a Science Fair judge, and assisted in helping the elderly clean up after hurricanes. Her hobbies include going to the beach and paddleboarding. She accepted her award and thanked her parents, teachers, advisors, and the Sebastian Exchange Club “for the opportunity.”
Lawrence Kim is an IB Diploma Candidate in the top 5% of his class. He is a National Honor Society member, a Florida Boys State Delegate, and a 2022 Naval Academy Summer Seminar Candidate. Lawrence is a member of NJROTC and is an Instructional Technologies Officer, a National Scholar Recipient, and an Executive Officer of the Air Rifle Team, Academic Team, and Cyberpatriot Team. In addition, he earned the Navy League Theodore Roosevelt Youth Medal. Lawrence holds a 1st Degree Karate blackbelt and participated in the International Sport Karate Association Tournament, finishing as Grand Champion in sparring; and forms. He was a Bronze medal winner at the International Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Federation Tournament. He is also a varsity tennis player. ROTC Commander Bissonnette says, “Lawrence exceeds meeting the challenge of doing the right thing daily.” In accepting his award, Lawrence announced that he would attend the US Naval Academy and study engineering after graduation. He thanked Sebastian Exchange Club, his advisors, and his parents for their support, saying, “this is a true honor and great milestone.”
The Exchange Club of Sebastian participates in many local community activities in addition to the Student of the Month program. Their pillars of service are The Prevention of Child Abuse, Youth Activities, Americanism, and Community Service.
Their major annual fundraiser, The Sebastian Exchange Foundation’s Blue Water Open Charity Offshore Fishing Tournament, will take place this year on June 3-4. Over the years, this event has raised over $929,000, which has been poured back into the community.
Should you share these interests, you are welcome to attend a Sebastian Exchange Club luncheon meeting at noon at Capt. Hirams Resort any Wednesday except the first Wednesday of each month. For more information on the Blue Water Open, go to www.bluewateropen.com.