Congratulations to Madalyn Fitzanko, who has been named as the senior class representative for the Good Citizen Award 2020. This award recognizes the senior student who displays the qualities of Dependability, Service, Leadership, and Patriotism. Students are nominated by faculty, then chosen by their peers. Congratulations, Madalyn! Thank you Maddie for sitting down with us to share your thoughts on what it means to be a good citizen.
Why do you think it’s important to be dependable?
“If I’m working in a group, then my group doesn’t have to worry about whether or not I’m doing my part. It reduces everyone’s stress level when you do your part.”
What kind of service projects have you participated in or lead?
“When I was younger my church made lunches for the homeless and we would deliver them to a church in Rockford. For a Senior Service Project, I raised money for the Stonewall Stitchers who make quilts for military men and women, by selling water, snacks and bracelets during the Memorial Day Parade and donated the money to Hillary Deppe (Hometown Heroes) to buy quilting supplies.”
Who influences your desire to be a good citizen?
“My parents. My parents and family because they taught me everything I know and always support me. People really respect my parents and I want people to think of me like they think of my parents.”
You seem to be a quiet person but you were nominated by faculty and then chosen by your peers - what do you think you did to get noticed?
“My teachers tell me that I’m good at understanding things and other students know that they can always come to me for help. They know that I might be able to explain things in a way that they can understand and I make myself available to help them. Math is my favorite subject.”
How have extracurriculars such as volleyball, basketball, poms and key club shaped who you are today?
“Sports have taught me to always give 100%. Key club has helped me to develop leadership and given me opportunities to participate or lead service projects.”
You are an outstanding Straight A student. How do you balance your academic rigor, extracurriculars, and service projects, especially since you are in many Advanced Placement classes?
“I start by making good use of free time in class when assignments are given. I start right away. I go home work on assignments before activities, go to my activity, then come home and work on homework until it's finished. I set these standards for myself. My parents reinforced good homework behaviors early on as they told me homework gets done first, no activities unless homework is done.”
What makes you a patriot in your eyes?
“Standing for the National Anthem. I really respect our country. I have family members in the service. I love making cards for and supporting the military men and women.”
What was your essay about?
“The essay topic was about what I would do to energize America's youth to fully engage as good citizens and why it's important if I was the nation's leader tomorrow.”
What do you see yourself doing in 5 years to continue being a Good Citizen?
“I want to be a Nicu nurse and continue participating in and leading service projects to help people in the community.”
If you could do one thing to help the world be a better place, what would it be and why?
I would like to go abroad and help restore or rebuild other countries because my church is involved in helping other countries like Haiti.”
We are very proud of Maddie’s strength of character, her generous heart, her service work, and appreciate that her actions always speak louder than words!
Photo by Mel Kerr