Friends and relatives of Mary Foell already know this Schaller-Crestland High School student is exceptional. They aren't the only ones. On Monday, the Next Step Magazine announced that Mary is being recognized as a 2006 Super Teen.
"The Super Teen award is given to students who exemplify academic achievement and a commitment to community service," said David Mammano, founder and publisher of The Next Step Magazine. "We are pleased to say that Mary Foell is among the cream of the crop."
The Next Step Magazine founded the Super Teens competition in order to honor outstanding teenagers in their community. Now in it's ninth year, the 2006 Super Teens contest received 400 applications from across the U.S. and Canada. Winners will be featured on the cover of the March/April issue.
"The Super Teens we selected are students who understand the importance of working hard and participating in activities that will not only help them to be accepted by the college of their choice, but will offer valuable lessons they can learn from and take with them as they enter adulthood," said Mammano.
Mary was cited for growing several gardens to donate food to the needy. "She realized that there were people going without food. So four years ago, this junior at Schaller-Crestland High School from Schaller, started donating extra strawberries from her strawberry business to the local food pantry," the magazine explains.
"I couldn't believe it when the coordinator of the food pantry said they very seldom got any fresh produce in," Foell said.
Mary and her family began donating each summer-and was able to provide more than 4,000 pounds of produce to more than 80 needy families. Mary was one of six teens recognized in Iowa through the Prudential Community Service Award, and was featured in the recent Pilot-Tribune Progress Reports. She volunteers regularly, and plans to major in ag education or horticulture in college.