Mikayla Melchert, president of the student body at Post Falls High School, figured out some time ago what she wanted to accomplish and part of her goal was assuring otherswere helped along the way.
“Ever since middle school, I had three goals for high school – to become student body president, to graduate from high school with my associate degree and bring Rachel’s Challenge into my school,” she said.
She had seen on television a piece about Rachel’s Challenge, a national program that seeks to create a positive climate and culture in schools. “I don’t see it so much as an anti-bullying program but more of a kindness-promoting one, one that sparks a chain reaction throughout a school,” she said.
Melchert lobbied her middle school and the school board, but there were costs involved that prevented its implementation, she said. But then on she went to high school, where she again pressed school administration and the school board. This time, success! Rachel’s Challenge program launched at Post Falls this year. Training sessions were held, and the program is up and running.
Melchert founded the Friends of Rachel’s Club and has initiated such unity-building initiatives as the Compliment Jar, a jar in the main office into which students can slip a compliment to a student. Three are chosen each day and read aloud to the entire school.
Although she did play some volleyball and softball when she was younger, she realized “I’m more academically oriented rather than sports oriented. I also like to work with other people on taking ideas from everyone and helping making them come to life.”
It was in middle school, where she was president of the National Junior Honor Society, that she discovered her passion for leadership and involving others in gaining consensus, and, being an organized person, it only made sense to her to set goals for herself.
And so she has worked through student government to emerge this year as its president. She is active in Key Club, National Honor Society, Spirit Club and works in the student store at school. As a member of Distributive Education Clubs of America, her hospitality team-building project was judged first in state competition, and she took it to nationals as well.
She maintains a 3.96 GPA. “I got a few B’s as a freshman because I hate history,” she said. “I beat myself up a little for that now.” And Melchert also has a job as a barista.
She hopes eventually to work in the field of marketing, ideally with different cultures around the world. To that end she will be entering Boise State University this fall majoring in marketing and international business.
Since she is already taking college-level courses online and in the evenings at North Idaho College, she will be a junior when she gets to Boise – because she will have earned her associate’s degree in high school. Goals achieved.
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