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Mattawoman Student Receives State Service Award

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The St. Mary's County Times Newspaper

The Calvert County Times Newspaper

Posted on February 23, 2012

Loranika Sharma, a sixth-grade student at Mattawoman Middle School.
Loranika Sharma, a sixth-grade student at Mattawoman Middle School.

LA PLATA, Md. (February 23, 2012) -- Loranika Sharma, a sixth-grade student at Mattawoman Middle School, was recently named Maryland’s middle school recipient of the 2012 Prudential Spirit of Community Award, a nationwide program that honors young people for outstanding acts of volunteerism.

Sharma was nominated for the award for co-founding an environmental group, “Go Green Environmental Group” to raise awareness about environmental issues. Sharma, along with her twin sister, Varanika, launched the group in elementary school and gained the support of her classmates. The group has worked to promote book recycling, encourage people to go “meatless” one day per week, teach community members how to make plantable greeting cards and has collected more than 130 bags of clothing for donation.

The annual awards program provides a unique opportunity to recognize students for exemplary acts of volunteer service in their communities. The awards are given to students for serving their communities through volunteer activities, such as helping the less fortunate, promoting health and safety, or protecting the environment.

As a state-level honoree, Sharma will receive a $1,000 award and will travel to Washington D.C. in May to participate in national award recognition events. Ten national honorees will also be selected from the finalist group and receive an additional $5,000 award, as well as $5,000 grants will be awarded on their behalf by the Prudential Foundation to the nonprofit, charitable organizations of their choice.

Since the program was launched in 1995, more than 100,000 student volunteers nationwide have been honored by the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program. For information on this year’s state honorees, visit

The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards was created by the National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) and Prudential Financial to honor both middle level and high school students for outstanding acts of community service. The NASSP provides research-based professional development and resources, networking, and advocacy to build the capacity of middle school level and high school leaders to continually improve student performance.

Source: Charles County Public Schools

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