The 36 new Gilford National Honor Society Chapter inductees porudly gather in front of peers and parents before the induction ceremony. (Jeff Ferland) (click for larger version)
November 22, 2011Members of the Gilford National Honor Society chapter welcomed 36 new members Tuesday, Nov. 15 during their induction ceremony, bringing their numbers to an all-time high.
According to NHS chapter adviser Lorienne Valovanie, this group of inductees exceeds all previous years for the Gilford chapter.
"This is the largest induction class," said Valovanie. "I can't find any record of a larger class."
According to Valovanie, to be considered for the NHS, students must maintain at least a 4.3 grade point average, and are typically some of the busiest students around the school.
Superintendent Kent Hemingway said he was pleased to see this level of achievement in Gilford students.
"It's easy to celebrate the success of our most studious students," said Hemingway. "This ties right in with the rise in AP scores. This is what we are looking for."
Keynote speaker Matt Finch, GHS English teacher, congratulated the students for their achievements, even though he added that the type of students on stage did not achieve this level of academic success for the recognition.
"There is a certain kind of person who does not need a gold star next to their name," said Finch, adding that their motivation for maintaining high grades in class while being active in the community gave a "certain personal gratification" to each individual NHS member.
He urged inductees to "become someone memorable" and "stand out in a crowd," and spoke of personal character.
Finch reminded students that even though it seemed like students did not have many freedoms in their lives, some day, they would be faced with very real, life-changing decisions. He said
"Remember what sets you apart tonight," Finch said, offering the students advice for when they get out on their own. "Hopefully, this reminds you of your true motivation, which boils down to integrity."
Finally, Finch advised students to "fall in love with what you do," and he pulled out a large red and white "Cat in the Hat" style hat, adding that the night needed something "Seuss-y."
Finch then read a specially written Dr. Seuss-style poem, which he tailored to inspire students.
Chapter President Chris Weeks described the four qualities of a NHS student, which include scholarship, leadership, service and character. According to Weeks, all 36 new inductees had earned the honor of becoming a NHS member.
"These students go above and beyond," said Weeks. "I hope the inductees are just as proud as the parents are of them tonight."
The proud grandfather of inductee Paige Laliberte, Paul, could not say enough about his granddaughter's achievements, and echoed the feelings of parents who gathered for the induction.
"We're pretty proud of her," said Paul. "She is a really amazing girl, and she loves her grandfather and grandmother very much."
He added that Laliberte was named MVP on the soccer team, and joined the NHS as a Junior.
Laliberte and her fellow inductees made the NHS pledge, and vowed to uphold their pledge throughout their academic carriers. The NHS pledge recites: "I pledge myself to uphold the high purposes of the National Honor Society to which I have been selected; I will be true to the principles for which it stands; I will be loyal to my school; I will maintain and encourage high standards of scholarship, service, leadership, and character."
Inducted into the the NHS this year were Brooke Beland, Malcolm Benavides, Mitchell Boutwell, Miranda Bowen, Brianna Bowen, Connor Brulotte, Rachel Cappello, David Chong, Dakota Clarke, Courtney Crowell, James Curtis, Michael Czerwinski, Allison Daigle, Gabriela Defregger, Molly Dietrich, Roland DuBois, Abigail Harris, Katherine Hughes, Paige Laliberte, Ashley Lamot, Corwin Leber, Alannah Mattice, Ellouise McGonagle, Grace McLaughlin, Zakkary McNutt, Daniel Minukhin, Brendon Murphy, Lauren Pereira, Megan Pleeter, Emily Reera, Katherine Rice, Sidney Stevens, Jessica Stone, Sydney Strout, Stephanie Vigue and Emily Watson.