The Portage Exchange Club honored two outstanding Portage High School seniors at its May 8 breakfast meeting at Miller’s Senior Living Community.
Lauryn Sanders was selected as the Portage Exchange Club Student of the Year. This award is given to a student who previously was recognized as a Student of the Month and applied for the annual scholarship.
The winner must complete an essay about community service. Sanders has been involved in community service through school organizations, such as the National Honor Society and Student Council, as well as her church. She has gone on several mission trips with her church, helping people with both their physical and spiritual needs. She also excels in extracurricular activities, especially swimming.
She was recognized at the Northern Indiana District Exchange Clubs 2013 Convention on May 3 as a Youth Runner-Up Winner. As winner of the Portage scholarship, she received $1,000 and was also awarded $200 as District runner up.
Sanders plans to attend the University of Indianapolis and medical school to become a psychiatrist.
Stephon Wilkins is the Portage Exchange Club 2013 ACE Award Winner. He was also honored as the Second Place ACE Award Winner of the Northern Indiana District Exchange Clubs.
ACE stands for Accepting the Challenge of Excellence. The award is given to a student who graduates from high school despite overwhelming obstacles. Although this award is not necessarily awarded because of outstanding scholarship, Wilkins has excelled both academically and athletically. He is on track to receive an Honors Diploma and has been a valued member of Portage wrestling since his sophomore year. His career record is 31 wins and 8 losses.
Wilkins described his proudest moment as winning his last wrestling match senior year, although he had been ill, and seeing his grandmother applauding with a huge smile on her face.
He plans to attend the University of Southern Indiana and major in biochemical engineering.
The Portage Exchange Club’s ACE Award is underwritten by Portage’s ACE Hardware. Owner Al Bumbales donated the entire $1,000 award this year.