by Mike Knaak
Sartell High School Student Council has been recognized as a 2021 National Gold Council of Excellence by National Student Council for its record of leadership, service and activities that serve the school and community.
“We have so many outstanding student leaders in our group and, of course, the most dedicated advisor, Karrie Fredrickson, who made it possible to earn this award,” said Student Council President Courtney Snoberger.
“I am so proud of the work the students have continued to do despite the challenges that COVID-19 has brought,” Fredrickson said. “They have never stopped working. They focused this year on engaging our students to feel connected and our staff to know we appreciate them. They have been creative in finding new ways to give and serve our community and grow in their leadership skills.”
Student Council Treasurer Summbla Anjum said, “From distance to hybrid and, eventually, in-person, we have all worked hard to make it an amazing school year, regardless of the circumstances. This award provides a sense of recognition, as well as motivation for the future.”
Two new events were the Quarantine Quest/Snowball Search. Snoberger said, “These were our two virtual weeklong activities that involved riddles, puzzles and more. We sent clues each day that required clever thinking and creativity, and the participant would unlock the clues that would be entered via a Google form at the end of the week. The committee that worked on it did a great job with the technology, and it went off without a hitch.”
In addition to new events, students continued annual events such as Thanksgiving in a Bag. “Each year we collect food donations in our advisory classes, which we donate to families in need throughout the community. I feel that it is a great way to come together as a school and better the community,” Anjum said.
“Receiving a National Gold Council of Excellence Award reflects the highest dedication on the part of the school to providing a strong, well-rounded student council program,” said Nara Lee, National Association of Secondary School Principals director of Student Leadership.
To meet the requirements for the National Council of Excellence Award, a student council must meet a variety of criteria. In addition to basic requirements such as a written constitution, regular meetings and a democratic election process, the councils have demonstrated successful sponsorship and participation in activities such as leadership development and service to the school and community.
Councils awarded the gold level of the award have successfully demonstrated the highest levels of leadership.