2002 USA Student Finalists

Brian Claeys
North Scott High School (Eldridge)
Son of Allen and Sue Claeys

Continuing the Green Revolution to Nourish Humanity
Everyday one quarter-million people are born onto this planet! By using my documentary about Dr. Norman Borlaug, I am educating people across the United States about Dr. Borlaug’s work to alleviate worldwide hunger. I encourage people to reduce hunger by thinking globally, but acting locally. Who knows, one of you may become the Hoovers and the Borlaugs of the future.

Aaron Eckley
Boone High School/Oskaloosa High School
Son of Douglas and Dee Eckey

50/50 Challenge
The 50/50 Challenge is a challenge to the community to give back to the community. My goal was to find 50 organizations/individuals within a 50 day period to come forward with a $50 donation to raise the needed money to purchase an Automatic External Defibrillator to be given back in to the community.

Thomas Foell
Schaller-Crestland High School
Son of William and Laura Foell

Share Your Garden
Share Your Garden is an effort to increase the amount of donations of fresh produce to the local food pantry. Donating my excess garden produce, plus encouraging others to donate excess produce, is a way to be part of the solution to hunger in Sac County since 14% of Sac County’s citizens are underneath the poverty level.

Manuel Garcia
Davenport Central High School
Son of Nick and Mary Ann Garcia

All Cultural Achievement Plan (ACAP) Hispanic Literacy Project
The first year of operation of my project has been successfully completed. The summer program portion of the program taught students about desktop publishing, bi-lingual print and education. The high school portion of the program ended in the month of June but will continue in the fall.

Lyndon Hawkins
Mount Ayr High School
Son of Rick and Marilyn Hawkins

Tire Retaining Wall
This project was designed to stabilize an eroding stream bank which was threatening the quality of a heavily used two-mile, multi-purpose recreational trail. A twenty foot retaining wall and a low head dam were constructed using discarded tires, steel posts, wire, and rock. The Tire Retaining Wall project exemplifies high Hoover standards in engineering principles, conservation practices, and community service.

Adriana McMullan
John R. Mott Postville High School
Daughter of Thomas and Gloria McMullan

Operation SOS
Operation SOS is aimed towards helping an orphanage and medical clinic in a developing country. I am collecting donated medicines, books, clothes, shoes, and other necessities and sending them in boxes to the Philippines. My grandfather receives the boxes and distributes the items. Funds for shipping the boxes come from monetary donations I have received from various donors in my community.

Kathleen Miller
Iowa City Regina High School
Daughter of Steve Miller and Ann Rhodes

Operation Smile
Operation Smile is an international, non-profit organization that provides health care and surgeries to children in twenty countries. My project involved starting a student Association of Operation Smile at my school. Our goals include raising money for surgeries, working on student awareness of international health care, and collecting supplies for Operation Smile.

Laura Mommsen
DeWitt Central High School
Daughter of Norlin and Beverly Mommsen

Beef Camp
I organized a beef camp to educate participants on the beef industry. The focus was to overcome the financial barrier in competition by educating youth for a long-term solution. There were hands-on sessions including: bathing, clipping, show-day preparation, showmanship and nutrition. The success of the camp will continue with an interactive web site and plans for an annual camp.

Joseph Morphew
Boone High School
Son of Mike and Chris Morphew

Songbird Landscaping
My project was designed to attract songbirds to elderly residences by improving the habitat. After research, planning, and fund raising, I planted over 300 shrubs at local elderly apartments. Next, I created an information booklet that can be used by organizations interested in continuing this project. In the fall I will assist National Honor Society members in continuing this project.

David Muecke
Johnston High School
Son of Ron and Nancy Muecke

Teens and Families for International Respect and Understanding
This program matches international students and, eventually, their families with screened and trained American students and their families. The goal of the program is to create relationships that will ease the adjustment of international students to Johnston High School, increase their involvement in the high school, and promote broadened cultural awareness and respect in all JHS students.

Maggie Mulvey
Northern University High School (Cedar Falls)
Daughter of Philip and Linda Mulvey

Promoting Multicultural Understanding
I inventoried the multi-cultural books from Black Hawk County’s elementary schools. I recorded fourteen children’s books on compact discs representing all seven continents. I created mini- lessons and cultural activities to coincide with the books. Every public elementary school in Black Hawk County will receive a compact disc and lesson plan folder. I hope to enhance understanding of our multi cultural society.

Alex Nerad
Iowa City City High School
Son of Kevin and Nan Nerad

St. Bridget’s Church Preservation
Preservation of our history is important to us all; you have to know where you came from to know where you’re going to. I’m helping to preserve the history of St. Bridget’s Church. My project has included fund raising for a new roof through a benefit concert, doing my Eagle Scout Project there, and maintaining awareness of the church’s history through many events.

Strider Patton
Mt. Vernon High School
Son of Dennis Patton and Christine Goodwin

Under Hill Skate Park, Mt. Vernon, Iowa
The number of rollerbladers and skateboarders has risen over the past five years. However, Mt. Vernon, with broken sidewalks, is pretty inadequate for skating, leaving the unsafe situation of skating in the streets. So, in 1999, I went to the City Council about building a skate park. Finally this summer, a safe place for kids to skate is being built.

David Rahn
Green Mountain Garwin High School
Son of Bruce and Carol Rahn

Fish in Schools and Hospitals (FISH)
Fish in Schools and Hospitals (FISH) is my project. I am gathering donations from people who are not using their aquarium supplies anymore and putting them into classrooms. I think fish give students a reason to come to school or something for them to look forward to. I want other people to see what good things come from having fish.

Zachary Scherrman
Beckman High School (Dyersville)
Son of Todd and Lori Scherrman

To Make a Difference
For my project, I organized a mission trip to Haiti. I began by collecting donations from area businesses. I then arranged connections with a Haitian priest who informed me of the people’s needs. My trip was a great success. While there, other Iowans and I delivered items, visited the Mother Theresa Children’s Home and helped at the local parish.

Isaiah Shnurman
Martensdale-St. Mary’s High School
Son of Harry and Charlotte Shnurman

Miniature Limousine
The goal of the Miniature Limousine is to create a breed of cattle that is unlike any other, a breed of cattle that is more feed efficient, easier to handle, and that is much more profitable, not only for the people of Iowa or the United States, but for the world.

Jamie Sogard
Eldora-New Providence High School
Daughter of James and Donna Sogard

Building Bridges: Restoring the Past and Strengthening a Path to the Future
Pine Lake State Park has many trails built in the 1930s by the CCC. The goal of my project was to solve a significant erosion problem along one of the trails. Through conservation measures I redirected the water along a ravine to stop the erosion and rebuilt a section of the sandstone wall that had washed away.