Colorado Springs, Colo. (Jan. 26, 2007) – The 2008 U.S. Figure Skating Scholastic Honors Team shines both on the ice and in the classroom. In this year’s class, all 10 scholar athletes have been named to the honor roll and/or won academic honors. Seven are straight-A students, and all 10 regularly participate, organize or lead charity programs in their schools or communities.
This year’s team will be honored during an on-ice ceremony at the 2008 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Saint Paul, Minn. The ceremony will take place Thursday, Jan. 24. The program, which started in 1997, was created by U.S. Figure Skating to recognize high school athletes who excel in the classroom and on the ice.
The award is available to U.S. Figure Skating members of all disciplines who are juniors or seniors in an accredited high school. They must be full-time students with a grade point average of 3.4 or higher and have competed at the novice, junior or senior level within the past two years. Candidates submit an application and an essay, which are reviewed by a panel that selects the team.
“Being named to the State Farm/U.S. Figure Skating Scholastic Honors Team is a tremendous accomplishment,” State Farm Vice President of Public Affairs Mike Fernandez said. “State Farm is honored to sponsor and recognize these student athletes for their academic excellence and athletic achievements. As recipients of this scholarship, these student athletes have shown the commitment, dedication and discipline needed to succeed not only as a student athlete but in future endeavors as well.”
The 2008 Female team members are:
Kylie Gleason is a repeat honoree of the Scholastic Honors Team. A member of the Skating Club of Boston, Gleason finished 15th last year in the senior ladies division at the State Farm U.S. Championships. Gleason, who will graduate this spring, attends The Noble & Greenough School in Dedham, Mass., where she is a straight-A student. In her application essay for the Scholastic Honors Team, she writes about how important her older sister, Hadley, has been in her life. Outside of the classroom, she is a three-year member of the Community Service Board. She took a service trip to Romania to work in hospitals and orphanages and has volunteered at Tufts New England Medical Center.
Katrina Hacker attends New York’s Professional Children's School, from which she will graduate this spring. Hacker, a member of the Skating Club of Boston, won the senior ladies competition at the 2008 North Atlantic Regional Championships and placed sixth at the 2008 Eastern Sectional Championships. In 2006, she placed fifth at the Junior Grand Prix event in Romania. In the classroom, Hacker has earned high honor roll recognition every semester and qualified for the National Merit Scholarship Program in 2008. In her application essay, Hacker writes about her hero, 1956 Olympic champion Tenley Albright. Hacker also excels with her community service. She was the co-producer of “Edges for Education,” a skating show that raised more than $32,000 for the Literacy Center at Boys & Girls Harbor in Harlem, N.Y.
Chrissy Hughes is a member of the Highland Skating Club and a senior at Liberty High School in Renton, Wash. Her most recent accomplishments on the ice include a sixth-place finish as a junior at the 2007 U.S. Championships. She also won her Junior Grand Prix debut last fall in Romania. Hughes is a straight-A student and is a member of the “Running Start” program, in which students can attend college classes and earn high school as well as college credit. In her application essay, she writes about being injured and the strength and knowledge she gained from reading Lance Armstrong's book It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life. Outside the classroom, she helped raise more than $2,500 for the American Cancer Society as the captain of her “Relay for Life” team.
Emily Samuelson graduates this spring from Novi High School in Novi, Mich. A straight-A pupil, Samuelson has been on the honor roll throughout her prep years. A member of the Ann Arbor Figure Skating Club, Samuelson finished in the top one percentile nationally on the ACT. Samuelson and longtime ice dancing partner Evan Bates have enjoyed great success in the junior ranks, winning the U.S. junior title in 2007 as well as a silver medal at the 2007 Junior Grand Prix Final. In her application essay, Samuelson writes about her accident at the 2007 World Junior Championships. There, in Oberstdorf, Germany, Samuelson fell and was injured when her partner cut her hand with his blade. The accident forced them to withdraw from the competition. Samuelson writes about how the accident actually solidified her commitment and motivation to succeed in the sport she loves. Samuelson is also a contributor to her community. She is a Sunday school teacher and member of the Interact Club (affiliated with the Rotary Club of Novi) as well as the Teens Aiding the Cancer Community organization.
Rebecca Tran graduates this spring from Cheyenne Mountain High School in Colorado Springs, Colo. A member of the Broadmoor Skating Club, Tran placed seventh at the 2007 Southwestern Regional Championships as a novice. She's been a straight-A student and was in the top one percentile nationally on the majority of her ACT scores. In her application essay, she writes about her uncle, Dr. Toan Nguyen, who as a young boy came to the United States from a poverty-stricken family in Vietnam. His passion to learn and succeed serves as inspiration for Tran. Outside the classroom, Tran volunteers weekly at a local hospital and is an instructor for U.S. Figure Skating Basic Skills learn-to-skate programs.
Chloe Wolf is a senior at Falmouth High School in Falmouth, Maine, and a member of the University of Delaware Figure Skating Club. At the 2007 U.S. Championships, she placed seventh as a novice in ice dancing. She's a straight-A student and a National Merit Scholarship semifinalist. In her application essay, Wolf writes about how she's been able to persevere over whatever obstacles she encounters because of the skills she's acquired through figure skating. Time management, working with people and compromise have proven invaluable, Wolf wrote, as she makes her way through school and skating. Wolf volunteers at a soup kitchen, bottle recycling shed and various food drives.
– U.S. Figure Skating –