Two students from the Westerville City School District will receive Fouse awards at the 15th annual Westerville Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast Celebration, which will be held on Monday, January 20, at Villa Milano. Honorees are Fraser Hartnell, a fourth grade pupil at McVay Elementary; and Kandy Boakye, a senior at Westerville South High School. The Fouse Award, named in honor of William H. Fouse, who was the first African-American graduate of Westerville Public Schools and Otterbein College, recognizes students in our schools who demonstrate the characteristics of Dr. King.
Hartnell is a responsible leader at McVay who is involved in Safety Patrol and Student Council. He participated in planning Red Ribbon Week to encourage youngsters to say no to drugs. He is always smiling and has a positive attitude towards school and his personal relationships with students and staff. Because he puts forth a strong effort in academics, Hartnell excels in the classroom, where he enthusiastically participates and is a positive role model. His behavior and work habits are excellent and he is respectful and helpful to all who cross his path, according to one of his previous teachers and nominator Lisa Dapoz. He shows tolerance towards others and is accepting of the cultural diversity in the school. Hartnell has received the Student of the Month Pride Award every year he has been at McVay. His kindness is contagious and he is a peacemaker in his daily life. Outside of school, Hartnell participates in flag football and has earned a black belt in taekwondo.
Westerville South High School senior Kandy Boakye got involved with South Theatre during her freshman year. Theatre Director Matt Wolfe, her nominator, learned that she wanted an outlet to share her passion for theatre with people who understood her story; with peers who looked like her. She wanted the department to be representative of her school community. Boakye worked passionately to bring her theatre troupe into her social group and worked equally hard to bring her peers together with theatre. She took over much of the planning and execution of the Black History Month celebrations at South, and created an environment where students of any background or culture were encouraged to celebrate their heritage. Boakye has led by example, finding rides for her friends, making rehearsals more inclusive, and working with the troupe to create a cooperative learning environment. This year, she joined the Westerville South High School Board as an elected officer, a testament to the respect she has earned from her peers. In the winter, South will be premiering an all-female, all-student-of-color show, School Girls (or the African version of the Mean Girls play). This will be a regional first for Central Ohio and only the second high school in the country to produce it. Boakye’s tenacity for diversity and representation led South to the title and the production. She will be playing the lead.
For more information about the breakfast, please contact Matt Lofy, Leadership Westerville, at 614/882-8917.