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State Honoree

Samantha Adams

Oregon

Samantha Adams, 14, of Aloha, Ore., an eighth-grader at Brown Middle School in Hillsboro, volunteers as a peer-tutor for underachieving students at a local elementary school. Inspired by her own primary classroom experiences with teen peer-tutors and the example set by her first-grade teacher, Samantha wanted to help other young children achieve success in the classroom. “I believe all children need a good role model and the opportunity to have a substantial education.” After obtaining permission from the principals of both schools, Samantha and her school counselor worked out a weekly schedule that allowed her to volunteer before school and during her first period elective class. Every morning she helps teachers by working individually with students, finishing small classroom projects, and being an extra teacher to answer questions and help keep young students focused on their studies. Since she began, 23 other students from her school have followed her example and volunteered to help at local elementary schools.