Students inducted into National Honor Society Sarah Roetman holds a candle and introduces herself to the audience in the VHS Auditorium during her induction into the National Honor Society. by David Lias Scholarship, service, leadership, character.
On its own, each trait is unique. All can be used, however, to describe the Vermillion High School junior who were inducted into the National Honor Society during special ceremonies Tuesday night in the VHS Auditorium.
VHS Principal Curt Cameron told the students he wasn't satisfied with the dictionary definition of leadership.
"When I went to high school, we had cliques, much like we do today," he said. "We had jocks, gearheads, burnouts, and nerds."
Every one of those cliques, he said, had members who stood above the rest.
"We referred to them as scholars," he said. "They earned respect for what they had mastered, much like you have."
Kathy Van Kley, the activities coordinator at the Sioux Valley Vermillion Medical Care Center, has watched VHS students in action as they participate in the center's Teen Angel program.
"Service is taking advantage of the opportunity to help others, and Vermillion is full of outstanding young people," she told the students. "You are at an excellent point in your lives to share your talents and abilities with others."
Rep. B.J. Nesselhuf noted that inductees wouldn't have been chosen for the special honor if they hadn't shown leadership at VHS. He encouraged them to continue making positive changes in their school environment.
"Good leadership influences events and people to get things done," he said. "It's not an easy thing to master. Leadership is always changing, but there are opportunities every day to step up to the plate."
Len Griffith, counselor at VHS, spoke about character.
"A test of character, I believe, is thinking to yourself how you believe you would behave or react when public approval is stripped away," he said. "One of the common tests of character occurs when you are out in the public, and there are consequences to your actions."
Griffith, who is constantly in contact with the inductees, told the audience, "I can have no higher respect for this group."
Tuesday's National Honor Society inductees are Mitch Bierle, Nathan Boots, Samantha Brown, Adam Brunick, Jared Burcham, Melissa Buum, Nelson Chang, Xaviera Flores, Brittney Gilkyson, Kendra Gottsleben, Sarah Gregg, Taiana Hayes, Heather Heine, Zachary Holoch, Lindsey Isaacson, Colette Joy, Whitney Lawrence, Justin Manning, Sarah Merrigan, Kayla Mollet, Kaia Nelson, Nichole Nelson, Kathleen Redlin, Theresa Ring, Sarah Roetman, Leslee Sell, Geng Wang and David Yutrzenka.