Government can change the world with policies, but the world can also be changed one coat at a time, one struggling teen at a time, and one restored church at a time. The DAR Good Citizens Award is intended to encourage and reward the qualities of good citizenship. Selected by their teachers and peers, and only one per school, they are chosen for their qualities of dependability, service, leadership, and patriotism.
Once chosen for this honor, these students are given the opportunity to participate to win a scholarship via a personal statement and essay.
The three honorees from Mint Hill are Kayla Prince, Banks Grubbs, and Mary Elizabeth Teague.
Kayla Prince took college courses along with her regular high school classes, and will graduate with a high school diploma as well as an Associates Degree in Art from South Piedmont Community College. She will be the first student in a traditional high school in North Carolina to graduate with a college degree. She is a member of the National Honor Society and the yearbook staff, and participated in both Cross Country and Track and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. She has been active in Samaritan’s Purse, Charlotte Rescue Mission, and was chosen out of a hundred volunteers as a youth mentor at Sandbox, an organization that supports families battling cancer. Her goal is to some day work in radiology. “I have always wanted to help people and make a difference,” Kayla said.
Banks Grubbs has achieved the distinctive rank of Eagle Scout. His Eagle Scout project was to organize a group of ten teenagers to renovate a 150 year old house that is being used for a Sunday School. Banks is in the National Honor Society, is President of the Young Democrats Club, and has achieved the Excellence Award in German Club, AP Environmental Science, and AP Biology. He is a nominee for several prestigious scholar awards, has worked with at risk teens through the Teen Health Connection, and has served as a leader at the YMCA’s Camp Hanes. Banks is not quite sure of where he will be going to college, but is thinking of Columbia or Cornell. “I would like to bridge the gap between environmental science and environmental science,” Banks said, when asked about his goals in life.
Mary Elizabeth Teague has served on the Student Council, the National Honor Society, Rho Kappa National Social Studies, and that is just the beginning of an impressive list. She was a leader in a winter coat drive initiative that resulted in collecting 500 coats for those in need. She will graduate with 1000 hours of community service, and has participated in several mission trips, service projects, and mentorship to students at a Title 1 elementary school. She plans to attend Boyce College to attain a Bachelor of Science in Biblical Counseling, then on to Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for a Masters. One of her eventual goals is to work in Pittsburg, PA in a church or school setting. “Ever since I spent time doing mission work there, I have always had a heart for Pittsburg,” said Mary Elizabeth.