Albemarle student named to state advisory board

The Stanly County Board of Education recently honored an Albemarle High School student for being named to a new state advisory board after competing in a state scholarship contest.

Vincent Gregory was one of 500 applicants for a scholarship opportunity for the Social Studies Repository as part of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (DPI), part of the U.S. Senate Youth Program, and was one of six finalists in the state out of 500 applicants to advance to the second phase.

Gregory met several criteria to qualify for the $10,000 scholarship, including volunteer work as a teen attorney with the Stanly County Courthouse. He received recommendations from two teachers and a counselor, along with Shirley Kersey, Executive Director of Stanly County Teen Court.

He also wrote an essay to answer the question, “How can the U.S. Senate promote the common good and public trust of the American people in a manner consistent with its Constitutional role within the federal government?”

Gregory also produced a video and, along with five other finalists, took a 100-questions true-false and multiple choise national senate exam. Finalists also were interviewed via Zoom.

He did not win the scholarship, but because of how much he impressed people with his accomplishments, he received an email from Senate Youth Program Coordinator Michelle McLaughlin, inviting him to be one of three student representatives on the North Carolina Social Studies Advisory Think Tank.

The think tank will “bring together a collaborative group of forward-thinking educators, community partners, and student representatives. The Social Studies Advisory Think Tank will play a role in shaping the future of social studies education by sharing innovative ideas, best practices, and valuable insight to issues and initiatives important to students,” according to the email.

Its role will be to make recommendations on implementation of K-12 Social Studies standards, and “to determine social studies initiatives and projects with the mission of enhancing teaching and learning opportunities in social studies classrooms and the community.”

Gregory was told by McLaughlin she and her team were “extremely impressed by your academic achievements, public service, and the initiative you have demonstrated as a student leader throughout your high school career.”