This fall, the Brattleboro Rotary Club welcomed nine local high school students to this year's Student Rotarian Program.
Participating teenagers include: Kristen Nadeau and Claire Quaassdorf of Hinsdale High School; Ben Jerome-Lee and Teddy Kramer of Brattleboro Union High School; Hunter Haddad and Katelyn Sylvester of the Windham Regional Career Center; Bryer McDougall of the Austine School; and Nick Bergeron and Devan Piniewski of Leland & Gray Union High School.

Offered to area high school juniors and seniors as part of Rotary's commitment to youth service, the Brattleboro Rotary Club's Student Rotarian Program is designed to give high school students the opportunity to experience Rotary firsthand, and to give Rotarians the opportunity to relate to high school students at a peer level.

Student Rotarians have the opportunity to develop public speaking skills, since they are called upon at each meeting to give brief reports about what is happening at their respective schools (i.e., academics, concerts, sports, school activities, personal activities, or any other interesting information). They also benefit from the chance to get to know fellow club members who are community leaders and mentors, and from the exposure to topics of local interest presented by guest speakers at each meeting.

"This is the 14th year that the Brattleboro Rotary Club has invited area students to join the club during the school year. In that time, more than 200 teens have participated as Student Rotarians," says Rich Carroll, Brattleboro Rotary Club member and coordinator of the Student Rotarian Program.

Each Student Rotarian attends 10 Rotary lunch meetings throughout the school year and participates in Rotary community service projects. "Student Rotarians are treated like any other Rotarian -- with respect, fellowship, and a sense of humor," says Carroll.

Participation is offered each year to students from Brattleboro Union High School, the Windham Regional Career Center, the Austine School, Hinsdale High School, and Leland and Gray Union High School. Students are selected by their schools using whatever means each school's administration deems appropriate. There are no academic or honors prerequisites.

The Brattleboro Rotary Club, founded in 1950, is an active community service club of about 90 members. It engages in community and human service projects locally and internationally. The club has weekly meetings at 12:15 p.m. every Thursday at the Red Roof Inn on Putney Road in North Brattleboro.

For more information about the Brattleboro Rotary Club's Student Rotarian Program, please contact Carroll at 802-254-4807 or Or visit the club's website.