Stu­dents hon­ored for achieve­ment

Dorchester Star - - Front Page - By DUSTIN HOLT dholt@ches­pub.com

RIDGELY — The Eastern Shore’s young tal­ent and achieve­ment were on dis­play at North Caro­line High School Satur­day, April 1, as the Fire Flies Den­ton youth or­ga­ni­za­tion hon­ored 100 Shore stu­dents at its 100

Youth on the Move cer­e­mony.

The mis­sion of the Fire Flies Den­ton event was to honor youth across the Eastern Shore who are ex­celling in the ar­eas of mu­sic, art, sports, aca­demics and com­mu­nity ser­vice. More than 600 peo­ple joined the cel­e­bra­tion, which fea­tured mu­si­cal and dance per­for­mances by the hon­orees.

Stu­dents be­ing hon­ored live in Tal­bot, Caro­line, Dorch­ester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Som­er­set and Wi­comico coun­ties.

The Dorch­ester County stu­dents rec­og­nized were Eu­gene Benjamin, Brian Ch­ester, Bri’Ya­nia Ch­ester, Ar­m­i­nee Dashiell, Aaron Evans, Jaden Evens, Tamy­ron Evans, In­dia Jones, Emily Mar­shall, Daniel Van­riel and Alle­sha Wongus.

“We are here to honor the out­stand­ing achieve­ment by our youth here on the Eastern Shore,” said Fire Flies Den­ton Pres­i­dent Don­cella Wil­son. “They do out­stand­ing things each and ev­ery day. They are our fu­ture, but they are also our present. They are mak­ing a great dif­fer­ence to­day.

“We are proud of all of them,” she said. “They do so many great things for their schools and their com­mu­ni­ties.”

The 100 Youth on the Move cer­e­mony is in­cluded in the three-part recog­ni­tion pro­gram by Fire Flies Den­ton, which be­gan in March 2016 with the 100 Men of Dis­tinc­tion on Mary­land’s Eastern Shore, and then the 100 Ladies of El­e­gance on Mary­land’s Eastern Shore in Oc­to­ber 2016.

The cer­e­mony also fea­tured sev­eral per­for­mances; Tay­lan Wil­son of Eas­ton High School, So­phie Cal­la­han of Den­ton El­e­men­tary School and Chyna Slaugh­ter of North Caro­line High School per­formed songs.

The Eas­ton High School Cheer­lead­ing GEMS and the ABM Danc­ing DI­VAS from Cam­bridge each per­formed dance rou­tines.

Bay­side HOYAS (Help­ing Our Youth Achieve Suc­cess) co-founder and Vice Pres­i­dent Paul Tue III of Ch­ester­town pre­sented two spe­cial scholar ath­lete awards, one to Kent County High School se­nior Manny Camper Jr., and one to Mardela High School se­nior Nasir Tucker.

Camper is study­ing to be a civil en­gi­neer at Siena Univer­sity while play­ing on the col­lege’s bas­ket­ball team. He has a 3.929 grade point av­er­age, is a Na­tional Honor So­ci­ety mem­ber and is ranked in the top 10 of Kent County High School’s grad­u­at­ing class.

He is a four-year var­sity starter on the Tro­jans’ bas­ket­ball team and was named North Bay­side player of the year after av­er­ag­ing more than 26 points a game as a ju­nior. He also won the Player of the Year award this sea­son. Camper be­came the first stu­dent at the high school to achieve the 1,000-point mile­stone in their ju­nior year.

“Manny has main­tained aca­demic ex­cel­lence while re­main­ing true to his core val­ues and faith,” Tue said.

Tucker will be at­tend­ing Sal­is­bury Univer­sity while ma­jor­ing in busi­ness with a mi­nor in ac­count­ing. He has a 4.0 GPA and is an Honor So­ci­ety mem­ber.

He was the team cap­tain for the Mardela var­sity wrestling team, and is a three-time Bay­side Con­fer­ence and re­gional cham­pion. He has achieved more than 100 wins and earned three berths in the state wrestling tour­na­ment, where he fin­ished fifth, sec­ond and sixth.

Tucker also men­tors youth at Mardela Mid­dle School and coaches ju­nior wrestling.

Tue then asked all the stu­dents to stand and be rec­og­nized. He also con­grat­u­lated fam­ily mem­bers for the suc­cesses of their stu­dents.

“All th­ese kids with all th­ese ac­com­plish­ments means you guys are doing some­thing right too,” he said.

Wayne Cur­tis Sr. of Queen Anne’s County, con­grat­u­lated the stu­dents for their ac­com­plish­ments and urged them to be strong when fac­ing ad­ver­sity.

“Like they said in the movie ‘Find­ing Nemo,’ just keep swim­ming,” he said.

Den­ton Mayor Abi­gail McNinch thanked Fireflies Den­ton for host­ing the cer­e­mony. She said the or­ga­ni­za­tion is great for the com­mu­nity and the Eastern Shore.

Del. Jeff Ghrist, R-36-Caro­line, pre­sented each stu­dent with citations from Gov. Larry Ho­gan and the Eastern Shore Del­e­ga­tion.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the FireFlies Den­ton youth or­ga­ni­za­tion, visit the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s Face­book page.

Fol­low Caro­line/ Dorch­ester Ed­i­tor Dustin Holt on Twit­ter @Dustin_ StarDem.

PHOTO BY DUSTIN HOLT

North Dorch­ester stu­dent Emily Mar­shall of re­ceives her award for be­ing named one of the 100 Youth on the Move by FireFlies Den­ton.

The ABM Danc­ing DI­VAS from Cam­bridge per­form dur­ing FireFlies Den­ton’s 100 Youth on the Move cer­e­mony in Ridgely Satur­day, April 1.

EU­GENE BENJAMIN, DORCH­ESTER COUNTY

DANIEL VAN­RIEL II, DORCH­ESTER COUNTY

AR­M­I­NEE DASHIELL, DORCH­ESTER COUNTY

IN­DIA JONES, DORCH­ESTER COUNTY

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