Groton on the Inside: Accolades all around for Groton students!

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Tompkins Cortland Community College will hold its 50th commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 23. Among the over 700 graduates who will receive their associate degrees that evening will be Groton High School seniors, Diaz Niño and Madeline (Maddie) Stamm – just a little over a month ahead of their walks to receive their high school diplomas at Groton on June 29.


Groton has had a program in place with TC3 for several years wherein students may take dual enrollment courses and earn both a high school credit and college credit simultaneously. The curriculum and course syllabi are approved by TC3 and Groton’s teachers are approved and become similar to “adjunct professors” at TC3. Teachers must have their master’s degree to be eligible to teach a dual enrollment course.


Along with taking college courses during the school year at GHS and over summers at TC3 throughout their high school careers, as well as meeting all the academic standards required for their high school graduation, both Niño and Stamm have been involved in far more than academics.


Niño, who is named valedictorian for the Groton Class of 2019, has been actively involved in class council, also serving as treasurer for a year, and was an integral and invaluable member of the GHS Drama Club’s stage crew for its productions of “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “Annie.”


Niño also taught Spanish to elementary students through games and songs, volunteered at the elementary school fair, assisted in the local Groton Memorial Park playground build and volunteered at a Halloween fair for local children.


Stamm has been involved in both student and class councils for her entire high school career and is currently student council vice president and class council secretary. She is also involved in Interact Club and Yearbook Club, for which she is also vice president.


She has also been in the French Club since seventh grade, serving some of those years as vice president and president, and raising money to go to France with the club, which she was able to do this past April.


Like Niño, Stamm was also a member of Drama Club in the productions of “State Fair” and “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,” primarily as a dancer, which was a perfect fit, as she has been a competitive dancer with The Next Jennaration for the past 10 years.


Stamm said, “Since starting dance, I’ve gotten so many opportunities like working with famous dancers and choreographers, as well as getting to audition for America’s Got Talent and participating in AJR’s music video for “Let the Games Begin”.”


Niño and Stamm, along with their parents and guests, were honored at a celebratory dinner at the Benn Conger Inn last week with Superintendent Margo Martin; high school principal, Billie Downs; associate principal, Jacob Roe; teacher and class advisor, Babs Carr; and members of the Groton Board of Education.


Each of these students will start their paths in the world of adulthood ahead of the game and have a plan going forward. Niño plans to continue his education with the goal of becoming a biomedical engineer; Stamm will attend Canisius College, majoring in Animal Science.

Pavilion Award nominees
Cortland Repertory Theatre has announced the nominees for its seventeenth annual “Pavilion Awards,” which recognize outstanding achievement in local high school theatre. Groton High School’s “Annie” has been nominated for both “Best Musical” and “Best Musical Ensemble” in two categories: visual and vocal, as well as the “Theatre-as-Education” award. In addition, 15 students have been nominated for individual awards – the most GHS has ever had nominated in a single year!


Travis Oudekerk is up for “Leading Actor in a Musical” for his portrayal of Oliver Warbucks, and Maggie Ossit was nominated for “Leading Actress in a Musical” as Annie. Morgan Dittman is in the running for “Best Supporting Actress in a Musical” for her role as Grace Farrell. Anthony Sirvent, who portrayed Franklin D. Roosevelt, was nominated for “Best Featured Actor in a Musical,” while Michaeline Lauchle is a contender for “Best Featured Actress in a Musical” for her role as Lily St. Regis. Sam Young is a nominee for the “Rising Star” award for his portrayal of Bert Healy.


Contending for the “Small Group Award” are both the Boylan Sisters group (Brooke Brecht, Alyssa Fennimore, and Leanna Jackson) and the Orphans (Bryn Blasz, Peyton Conger, Megan Cute, Tina Hall, Diella Niño, and Elissa Norton).


The nominees for all productions and acting awards were selected by volunteer judges who attended the shows at each school. Each judge is involved with Central New York theatre in some way, whether as a performer, technician, within the educational system or as an avid theatergoer. In each category, the nominees who received the most votes have been selected as finalists.


The Pavilion Award ceremony will be held Tuesday, May 28 at the Little York Pavilion, home to CRT. The awards will be presented on the CRT stage, and each school will perform a musical number from their show at the ceremony. Tickets for the event are limited to family and friends of those involved in the show but look for the results in the June 5 edition of this column, should Groton bring home some trophies. I fully expect they will!


Groton on the Inside appears weekly. Submit news ideas to Linda Competillo, lmc10@cornell.edu or 607-227-4922.

In brief:

Outstanding CTE students
The following Groton students were recognized as outstanding students of the month for April at the Career and Tech Center at the Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga BOCES: Joel Carl, Culinary Arts; Christopher Hickox Jr., Auto Technology; Thomas Miller, Heavy Equipment; and Cameron Searls, Welding.


The outstanding students of the month are chosen based on qualities such as character, leadership, citizenship, work ethic, and attendance. They must also be compassionate, honest, trustworthy, responsible, and a positive role model, display exemplary behavior resulting in a flawless behavior record for the month, be present, on time and prepared for class every day of the month, be respectful and cooperative with peers and adults, eager and motivated to learn, exhibit exceptional contribution to class or academic improvement in class, demonstrate a positive and helpful attitude toward fellow students, and have all assigned work complete for the month.

GrotonCon is coming!
Save the date now because the Groton Public Library will be kicking the summer off with its annual “GrotonCon” on Tuesday, July 2 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with pizza, cookies, face painting, Sir James the balloon artist, and much more!


For the rest of this popular summer reading program, all the performers and events will take place every Wednesday at 2 p.m. at the Groton Memorial Park on Sykes Street under the pavilion near the pool.

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