Plymouth freshman, Francis Wayland Parker Scholar, tries to do her bestBy RYAN O'CONNOR
Union Leader Correspondent
May 04. 2014 10:21PM
PLYMOUTH — Lilly Friedman has long been lauded by teachers, administrators and peers as a standout student with a bright future. The Plymouth Regional High School freshman is the Francis Wayland Parker Scholar for April.
“Honestly, as long as I can remember, I’ve had a passion for learning,” Friedman said. “Ever since I was a kid, I tried to do my best, always. I mean, I remember worrying about having good handwriting when I was first learning, and then in middle school, when you could be on the honor roll, I wanted to try hard to do my best and be one of the top students.”
Friedman’s guidance councilor, Paul Ferenc, said she’s well beyond her years in academic maturity.
“She’s been a high honor roll student since day one,” he said. “She’s very conscientious and fun-loving. Her teachers love her, her peers love her, and when she puts her mind to something, she gets it done.”
With a GPA of 98.24 out of 100, Friedman is currently ranked first among 176 freshmen.
Friedman, in her essay about the Bedford-born educator Parker, said her school provides a positive learning experience.
“As Parker suggested over one hundred years ago, the teachers at PRHS have their own specific methods of teaching. This makes each classroom a unique and enriching experience,” she wrote.
Friedman excels outside the classroom as well. In addition to playing high school soccer, basketball and softball, she’s involved in school music festivals, choir, theater, student senate, and was a member of the student council from third through eighth grade.
She’s also twice been nominated to the People-to-People student ambassador program.
On the volunteer level, she’s spent hours participating in food drives and wrapping gifts for victims in areas of the country devastated by natural disasters such as Hurricane Sandy.
“For me, I think it’s been easier because I have to really manage my time to get everything done when it needs to be done,” she said. “There’s no more waiting until the last minute to do my homework. If I don’t get it done when I plan to, I won’t have time to do it.”
“She is a very talented, engaging pleasure to have in class,” said Janice Prescott, administrative assistant to the principal at Plymouth Regional High School. “She’s in all honors-level classes ... and really has a fantastic work ethic. She’s just a great all-around student.”
The Francis Wayland Parker Scholar program is sponsored by the New Hampshire Association of School Principals, in cooperation with the New Hampshire Union Leader, Lifetouch Studios and the Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Northern New England.
Other nominees for April were Jacob George of Monadnock Regional High School in Swanzey; Kathryn Frost of Manchester West High School; Jessica Manning of Campbell High School in Litchfield and Kelsey Mako of Moultonborough Academy.