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Senior Silver Cord hours tabulated

The Silver Cord program benefits both students and the community (M. Wilson).

The Silver Cord hours for the Senior Class of 2012 are now entered into the database. Counselor Karen Miller has been speedily entering numbers to determine who will be granted the honorary Silver Cord.

Before Miller took over the Silver Cord program almost 10 years ago, the requirement was only 15 hours and not the current 30 hours. A student can do them whenever they wish during their sophomore through senior year.

“A student could definitely kill 10 service hours in a year,” said Miller. “This 10 hour guideline help students manage their time each year if they wish to achieve the goal of 30 hours.”

Freshmen are not allowed to participate in the Silver Cord program because the Freshman Academy touches upon community service opportunities in advisory. Limiting the years allows freshmen not to have any added anxiety entering the high school environment.

This program is not mandatory in order to graduate from Huntley High School, but there are benefits to being a part of this program. Students can put this honor on scholarship applications, job applications, and so on.  Others participate in this program just for the personal experience.

“Seeing the faces of the people we helped afterwards is the real reason I participate,” said senior Travis Navarro. “The smile is what makes it all worth it.”

Community service is not just to earn a cord that you wear during graduation, but to make people become better citizens and learn to give back.

“If I were in the position where I needed to go to a soup kitchen, I would want the help from my community,” said Navarro. “I want to know if I was ever in that position I would be able to and this program proves that to me.”

The slight catch to this program is that a student cannot use Silver Cord hours towards Student Council and National Honors Society volunteering requirements and vice versa.

The 2012 senior class has already put in over 7,000 hours of community service with more than 100 students participating over the past three years.

Top participating students include Ryan Kraus with over 600 hours, Anan Hussain with over 500 hours, Travis Navarro with 345 hours, Nick Brownell and Brody Burkart with over 300 hours, Larry Watt with 204 hours, Tara Lycos with almost 200 hours, and Hunter Stewart with 193 hours.

These students have participated by being camp counselors, coaching little league sports, PADS, helping at the Huntley Animal Shelter, Girls on the Run, Big Brothers Big Sisters, volunteering at Sherman Hospital, and being tutors and mentors to younger students.

“Most students wouldn’t have had the chance to participate in the community,” said Miller. “With this program, we give them the chance to experience something out of their comfort zone and into the real world.”

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