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State Honoree

Samantha Wright

Georgia

Samantha Wright, 14, of Valdosta, Ga., an eighth-grader at Valdosta Middle School, assisted in the creation of a mobile, hands-on science education center to increase community awareness of air and water purification. As a member of her school’s service learning club, Sam wanted to help educate her community about clean air and water in a fun and meaningful way. “I believe that everyone should learn about how important it is to purify the air we breathe and the water we drink,” she said. After deciding to turn a bus into a mobile learning center, Sam and her fellow club members wrote grant applications and coordinated fund-raising activities, which raised more than $30,000 for the project. They also wrote lesson plans, prepared and furnished the mobile unit, and then began using it to teach science lessons to the elementary students in their school district. Sam said the experience had taught her that “everyone has some talent or contribution they can make. Everyone can make a difference – even a kid!”