Union Pines Senior Wins Junior Builders Cup
Lindsay Caddell is this year's recipient of the Junior Builders Cup awarded by the Kiwanis Club of the Sandhills.
The senior at Union Pines High School received the award and a $2,500 scholarship at National Golf Club during a recent Kiwanis luncheon.
Caddell was one of four local high school students nominated for the annual award, which recognizes a graduating senior in Moore County who exemplifies achievement in academics, athletics, school activities and community service.
Each year, principals and teachers from the area's high schools nominate an outstanding student for the award.
The Kiwanis has given the award since 1962.
Other nominees for the award were Garrett Berk from Pinecrest High School, Amelia Schirmer from The O'Neal School and Tyler Wallace from North Moore High School.
Each of these students received a $1,000 scholarship for their nomination.
Junior Builders Cup committee chairman Mike Thomas said each of this year's candidates were more than qualified for the award, and decision to give the recognition to one student was a difficult one.
"Today, the word 'outstanding' is an understatement," he said. "The academics are just the tip of the iceberg for these four students. They're all winners in every sense of the word."
Thomas said after the luncheon that the "intangibles" of the students' interviews were the main elements that helped the committee select just one student for the award.
"Nobody had any idea [who would win]," he said. "It was just that kind of year, but it's nice that we're getting people [nominated], who are that outstanding."
Caddell is the first senior from Union Pines to win the Junior Builders Cup in the last five years.
She was both surprised and honored to be this year's recipient. While thanking club members for her recognition, she also highlighted the achievements of her peers.
"We do a lot," she said. "It's hard, but it's what makes our lives fun. Doing all that we do makes us who we are."
North Moore senior John Spivey II received the award last year.
Caddell, the daughter of Janet and Bryan Caddell, plans to attend East Carolina University to study nursing after graduating at the top of her class at Union Pines with a weighted grade-point average (GPA) of 4.88.
She is a recipient of the EC Scholars award, the most prestigious scholarship offered at ECU.
Caddell hopes to become a neonatal nurse practitioner and eventually return to Moore County to work at FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital, where she has spent several hours volunteering and shadowing Dr. Nicholas Lynn, a neonatologist at the hospital.
Caddell's desire to become a neonatal nurse stems from her family's personal experience with her baby cousin, who spent his first weeks in a neonatal intensive care unit.
She said she still remembers the nurse who cared for her cousin and worked with her family to ease anxiety.
"That was hard for our family," she said. "I want to give that level of comfort and stability to somebody else."
At Union Pines, Caddell has been a member of the softball and track teams, as well as president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and a member of the yearbook staff, marching band, National Honor Society, Key Club and spirit club.
In a recommendation letter, Union Pines principal Robin Lea compared Caddell to a "treasured heirloom quilt" created by a patchwork of "impeccable, individual qualities and accomplishments."
"Her rare down-to-earth personality combined with an intellectual curiosity and drive to succeed is what powers Lindsay's success," Lea wrote. "Her character is the centerpiece of her quilt."
Berk, the son of Dr. Carl and Jennifer Berk, plans to attend Duke University next fall and is considering pursuing a career in medicine.
He is a member of the National Honor Society, plays in the Pinecrest orchestra and participates in the Pinecrest Global Awareness Club, as well as the swim team, cross country team and track teams, serving as captain of the swim team his junior and senior year.
Of his many awards and honors, Berk has received the coach's award for swimming all four years and was a recipient of the Knights of Columbus Award for Outstanding Achievement in American History his junior year.
In 2010, he attended Governor's School East for mathematics.
Outside of school, Berk enjoys music, playing six- and eight-string guitar, piano and violin, as well as spending time outdoors, including serving as a lifeguard at Pinebluff Lake.
He is also an active member of his church and has earned the rank of Eagle Scout as a member of Boy Scout Troop 223.
Berk's English teacher, Melonie Jones, described Berk as the "ideal student," who leads by example.
"Garrett is what I would consider a quiet intellect. His strong work ethic, persistence and intellectual integrity show in every aspect. He does not flaunt his intelligence; rather, he motivates others to succeed."
Schirmer plans to attend the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill next fall, where she hopes to major in environmental studies and explore ways to build environmentally sustainable communities.
She is the daughter of Charles and Katherine Schirmer and enjoys photography, creative writing and participating in various outdoor recreational activities.
Though The O'Neal School does not rank, Schirmer is considered to be one of the top performing students in her class with a 4.15 weighted GPA.
Besides academics, Schirmer has played tennis and soccer all four years at O'Neal, serving as captain of the tennis team this past year and captain of the soccer team her junior and senior year.
She is also president of the school's intramural program, secretary of the Student Government Association, secretary of the Key Club and has been a member of the school's Model UN program for the past three years.
Earlier in the year, students in O'Neal's Upper School elected Schirmer as the 2011 homecoming queen.
Schirmer has also been a camp counselor at Green River Preserve in Cedar Mountain for the past two summers.
Woody Wilder, chairman of the upper school's history department, wrote: "Amelia shines as one of the best students I have ever worked with. She is intelligent and has a depth and soul to her intellect."
Wallace, the son of Timothy and Pamela Wallace, will also to attend UNC-Chapel Hill next year, where he plans to study business.
Wallace, a three-sport athlete at North Moore, has ranked number one in his class during all four years with a weighted GPA of 4.77.
This past year, he served as a captain on the football and basketball teams and was named Yadkin Valley Conference All-Conference team for baseball his junior year.
Wallace is currently the president of the North Moore Beta Club and the Central District Club, as well as a member of the Future Business Leaders of America and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
He has also served as a student representative for the Student Government Association all four years, serving as vice president this year.
Wallace also began Athletes for Autumn Care, an organization of North Moore athletes who volunteer to spend time with residents at a local nursing home.
Outside of school, Wallace works on his family's farm and shows Boer goats, as well as playing Post 45 Junior American Legion baseball.
In his letter of recommendation, North Moore principal Scott Absher said Wallace is an upstanding student who does everything with great dedication.
"Truly, he is an incredible young man," he said. "And he does all that he does with good humor and a good attitude."
Contact Hannah Sharpe at email@example.com.
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