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WSL announces Youth Service Award winners

Wellesley Service League (“WSL”) has announced 5 graduating High School Seniors will be awarded the Centennial Youth Service Award (“CYS Award”). WSL historically presents this annual CYS Award to two graduating High School seniors for distinguished community service. However, this year, because WSL received so many outstanding applications, it increased the 2021 CYS Award to include three additional graduating High School seniors who merit recognition for their distinguished community service.

WSL has named three recipients and two co-recipients for its 2021 CYS Award. The three Recipients, all from the 2021 graduating class of Wellesley High School, are: Grace Rodrigue, Seth Tobin and Ben Workman. Each will receive a $1,500 award from WSL. Additionally, two co-recipients will share in a $1,500 CYS Award from WSL. The co-recipients are: Alex Abdelal and Jake Merritt, of the 2021 graduating classes of Nobles and Greenough School in Medford, and Wellesley High School, respectively. All five recipients will have their names displayed on an engraved plaque that hangs permanently in the Wellesley Community Center.

The recipients of the 2021 CYS Award said they were honored to receive this distinguished award and expressed gratitude for WSL’s efforts to benefit the community and foster the spirit of volunteerism. Also, they said they intend to continue pursuing their volunteer service interests following graduation and will focus on creating a positive impact within each of their communities. In the Fall of 2021, Grace Rodrigue will attend Northeastern University, Seth Tobin will attend Hamilton College, Ben Workman will attend Harvard College, Alex Abdelal will attend Yale University and Jake Merritt will take a gap year working at a nonprofit organization prior to attending college.

“We reviewed a record 14 applications for the 2021 award cycle and all applicants were very well-qualified. It was a challenging decision because all of the applicants made significant contributions through their time, enthusiasm and volunteer efforts. In evaluating these applicants, the driving factors were the breadth, depth, and passion of volunteerism in the Wellesley community. WSL is grateful to have such outstanding young adults who contribute in important and meaningful ways to our community,” explained Kim Moldaver-Carr, immediate past president of WSL and administrator of the CYS Award. “Our mission is twofold: to encourage the spirit of volunteerism in our community and to recognize our young adults for outstanding volunteer service,” Moldaver-Carr said.
The CYSA recipients will be recognized in June at the Wellesley High School Awards Video that, due to COVID-19, will be held this year in lieu of the traditional Wellesley High School Awards Ceremony.

The Wellesley Service League has presented the annual CYS Award for the last 36 years. This award for outstanding volunteer service, preferably in the Wellesley community, is presented to a Wellesley resident who is completing their senior year of high school and who has demonstrated unusual dedication and selflessness in a volunteer capacity in the Wellesley community.

The Wellesley Service League traces its roots back to the fall of 1927, when its members organized to provide volunteer service to the community. Today the Wellesley Service League has between 75-80 active members and on average they provide more than 5,000 hours of service each year through their dedication and hard work. To learn more, visit www.wellesleyserviceleague.org.

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