Pictured left to right: Kyle Chu, Dominick Marabella, Rachel Crews, Mike O’Day, and Anjie Soucy.

SBHS Students Receive VSADA Student Athlete Scholar Award

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Thursday January 13, 2011

Rachel Crews and Kyle Chu are the 2010–2011 recipients of the prestigious Vermont State Athletic Directors’ Association (VSADA) Student-Athlete Scholarship Award, and both are grateful for the honor.

Ms. Crews and Mr. Chu, seniors at South Burlington High School, were recognized at the annual VSADA Awards Dinner, held this year on November 15 at the Sheraton Hotel and Conference Center.  In front of over 400 in attendance, South Burlington High School Director of Student Activities Michael O’Day announced that both Ms. Crews and Mr. Chu had been selected to represent the state of Vermont at the New England level of the award.  Mr. O’Day further noted that this honor, which is part of the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA) Student-Athlete Scholarship Program, “recognizes well-rounded individuals who bring excellence to their academic studies, their athletics, and their communities through service and leadership.”

“I’m very grateful for the recognition and for the support and resources I’ve had throughout my high school career,” noted Ms. Crews, who will attend Middlebury College in the fall.  Mr. Chu, headed to the University of Vermont in September, agreed and added, “The people who make these resources and opportunities available to us—people who push you every day to be the best person you can be—sometimes go unrecognized:  coaches, teachers, family, friends.  It’s important for them to know that it really helps to know that they are there.”

While both are quick to offer thanks to others, their own significant accomplishments cannot be denied.  The two have made honor roll every semester since freshman year, and both are members of the National Honor Society and Student Council.  Additionally, they are three-season varsity athletes and have been chosen as captains of their athletic teams:  Ms. Crews for field hockey and basketball so far this year and Mr. Chu for soccer and indoor track/basketball (he does both in a single season) so far this year.  Mr. O’Day added, “Rachel and Kyle are outstanding, well-rounded student-athletes.  They have their lives in perspective, being able to balance the pressures and expectations placed on them by school, athletics, family, and community.  And they excel at everything they do.”

Part of that balance involves making time to give back to the community, which both Ms. Crews and Mr. Chu value.  “I think giving back to the community is extremely important because there are people out there who don’t have nearly as much as we do,” noted Mr. Chu, while Ms. Crews listed her involvement with Habitat for Humanity, JUMP, and the CROP Walk as activities important to her.

Both return to words of thanks when offered congratulations for their accomplishments.  “I would say I’m pretty self-motivated, but that comes from being surrounded by good role models,” explained Ms. Crews.  “My parents work hard, and I’m grateful that they’ve had a positive impact on me.  My sister also works hard and takes pride in what she does, and I’ve had that positive influence.”

Mr. Chu credits his siblings as well for being positive role models:  “My two older brothers are real drives for me.  I find a lot of motivation from them.  They’ve helped me build my personal belief about working hard at all you do.”

As both these student-athletes look to their future, they intend to remain open to learning.  “All that I’ve learned from being on athletic teams will benefit me later in life,” noted Ms. Crews.  “I feel that everything I do I can learn from.”

SOURCE: Susie Merrick, Contributor