From an Everett Public Schools news release.
Leah Shin's mantra is, “Work hard in silence; let success make the noise.”
When told she was one of just two students in Washington to win the 2015 Prudential Spirit of Community Award all Shin could think of was others, “… the immense support I received from my family, the Literacy for Love team, Henry M. Jackson High School, the University of Washington Foster School of Business: Young Executives of Color Program, and most importantly the entire Mill Creek/Bothell community.”
“I am driven by determination to transform our world, to find solutions to today’s major challenges, from adversity to illiterate communities and lack of educational resources around the world. Thank you Prudential Spirit of Community Awards for allowing me to dream my dream.”
Jackson High School Associated Student Body Advisor Alan Briggs was not at all surprised Prudential recognized Shin, “Leah is a dedicated Servant-Leader in our school and in our community, and many benefit from her strong desire to be in the service of others.”
For the last two years Shin has been a Jackson High School leader. Briggs described her as a talented event planner, “… who knows how to successfully bring large group of individuals together to build creative and productive teams.” He remembered the senior class Putt Putt Golf event at Jackson High Schools a couple of years ago, “Players putted tennis balls up and down the hallways, through lots of creative obstacles and themes. The event was a huge success – in FUN-raising and fundraising.”
Shin is passionate too about the school’s Literacy for Love Club which gathers books for those who cannot afford them. She even used the news about her Prudential award as a way to boost awareness for one of the club’s upcoming projects by saying, “Please support Literacy for Love's upcoming event, Literacy for Love's 2015 first annual Cultural Gala. The cultural gala will be held at the end of May and opened to the entire community where all funds raised will be donated towards educational endeavors. More information will be updated on our official website: http://literacyforlove.weebly.com/"
Shin was chosen from among Washington state nominations submitted by public schools, Girl Scout Councils, 4-H organizations, American Red Cross, YMCA and HandsOn Network affiliates.
An independent judging panel reviewed nominees and selected two State Honorees and other Distinguished Finalists, based upon criteria such as personal initiative, effort, impact and personal growth.
Shin shares her State Honoree award with a middle school student from Olympia.
Both Shin and the Olympia middle school student will travel to Washington D.C. in May to meet the other 102 State Honorees (including two from the District of Columbia).
In addition to each being awarded $1,000, the State Honorees will tour the capital’s landmarks, meet top youth volunteers from other parts of the world, attend a gala awards ceremony at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, and visit their congressional representatives on Capitol Hill.
On May 4th, 10 of the 102 top state volunteers will be named America’s top youth volunteers of 2015. These 10 top national volunteers will each receive $5,000 in cash and another $5,000 for a charity of their choice.
The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program has been in place 20 years. Since 1995 more than 100,000 young people have been honored through local, state and national processes of the program. The program is also active in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Ireland, India and China.