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Miscoe Students Make Impact as Project 351 Ambassadors

Miscoe Hill School students Leah Fitzgerald from Upton and Josh Shrestha from Mendon were chosen as Ambassadors for Project 351, a statewide volunteer effort involving eighth-grade students from across the Commonwealth.



Miscoe Hill Middle School students Leah Fitzgerald from Upton and Josh Shrestha from Mendon were recently chosen as Ambassadors for Project 351, a statewide volunteer effort involving eighth-grade students from across the Commonwealth. The goal of Project 351 is for students to build skills and confidence, explore issues, embrace leadership, and motivate a lifetime of service through service, leadership development, and enrichment. The two local students, representing Mendon and Upton, were nominated by their teachers and Miscoe Principal Ann Meyer to join over 400 other Ambassadors in cities and towns throughout Massachusetts.

The students boarded an early bus in Worcester on January 18, and traveled to the State House where they began their day listening to motivational speeches by past Ambassadors as well as Project 351 Honorary Chair Governor Deval Patrick. Governor Patrick spoke to the students about the importance of leadership and reflected on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. "He spoke about how we should be proud to have been selected as Ambassadors, and about Dr. King's belief in freedom and respect for everyone," said Josh.

After a tour of the State House, the students broke up into groups to begin their day of community service in different locations throughout Boston. Leah spent the day working in the Mason Elementary School in Boston, working with other eighth-grade students throughout the Commonwealth in putting together over 250 supply kits, which included notebooks, crayons, glue sticks, and activity books for students who could not afford classroom supplies.

Josh spent the day at the Orchard Gardens School in Boston volunteering by doing kids face painting at a community fair for local families.

Both students said that they enjoyed the day and took back a great deal from their experience. "I was really encouraged to do more; to help more people," said Leah. "I knew what I was doing at the school was a small start, but I also knew I could go home and help in my school and community," she said.

Josh agreed that even the little projects were not insignificant. "I did something small, but it made a big impact," he said.

The students also mentioned that one of the highlights of the day was all of the new people that they were able to meet. "The vibe was so bright, and everyone was showing their true colors," Josh said.

The Project 351 Ambassadors were nominated based on their "exemplary ethic of service and their values of humility, compassion, commitment, kindness, and generosity of spirit." Meyer said that the two students chosen this year model those traits on a daily basis. "Leah and Josh are both such great kids. They are highly respected by their peers, they are kind and considerate, and they really go out of their way to include everyone," said Meyer.




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