Reprinted from Foster’s Daily Democrat
Alton—January 7, 201—Tuesday, December 17, started out as just a normal day for Mrs. Sweezy’s Advanced Placement Biology class. They were just as confused as the rest of the school when everyone was sent to the auditorium during homeroom. Then, they saw their own faces on the projector, as the video they had created to inform viewers of the increasing milfoil problem in lakes started to play.
After the film, two representatives from S.W. Cole Engineering (a company that specializes in soil, construction, and material testing) called up Anna Hingston, Shannon Meyer, Brooke Dame, Ella Montminy, Dante Prior, Samantha Srbek, Julia Carter, Meghan Hennessey, Mikayla Cauler, Ashlee Roy, Abby McMahon, KarieBilodeau, Mark Jannini, Zach Mayo, Jenny Ordway, and Tessa Chambers (the AP class) to stand before all of their peers, as they received a $1,000 scholarship for being chosen as one of eight winners of the video competition they had entered.
The class was astounded to have won. They had only found out about the competition two weeks prior to when their finished and perfected piece was due. They spent one day researching, another day discussing what they had found, two days filming, and a final day editing. Their video featured an interview with Angela Piemonte, an intern with New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services.
Mrs. Sweezy mentioned how fast the organization had replied to the class’ desire to interview someone, and how helpful Angela had been to them.
Milfoil is an invasive species that can cause native plants to stop growing. Once that happens, fish who depend on those plants to live, will also begin to die.
“I didn’t know how bad the milfoil problem was, especially not in Lake Winnipesaukee, until we started researching it,” said Zach Mayo, a member of the award winning class. The scholarship will be spent on a trip to Squam Lake Natural Science Center. The class is planning on going on the “Explore Squam Lake Cruise,” to be further educated on the environment and how to make it better.
Creating a better environment will not stop after high school for a great number of these AP students.
Mark Jannini, Meghan Hennessey, Abby McMahon, KarieBilodeau, Tessa Chambers, and Jenny Ordway all plan on working to conserve the environment, or work with another form of Biology as a career. Many of the students are also members of the Prospect Mountain High School Environmental Club.
The class plans on entering another video competition, only next time the topic will be population. Through intensively studying the topics at hand, each student builds their knowledge of how important the environment is, and new ways of improving it.
“Making this video was a great learning experience that’s preparing them for things they are going to encounter in the working world, and college,” said Mrs. Sweezy.