North Hills High School senior Wright earns Troy43.com honor
Jennifer Wright thought it was a normal school day, but the North Hills Senior High School senior was surprised in English class by a visit from Theodora Polamalu, wife of Pittsburgh Steeler Troy Polamalu.
As the November Student of the Month, Jennifer was chosen from more than 300 student nominations in a nationwide contest conducted by Troy43.com, an arm of the Troy and Theodora Polamalu Foundation, a charity run by the Pittsburgh Steeler and his wife.
“I was very surprised and shocked,” Jennifer, 17, said. “I didn't even know what to do.”
Wright was nominated by North Hills English teacher Mark Franks of Shaler, who said that not only is Wright a good student, she lives her life with “absolute sincerity.”
“Jen deliberately attempts to lead a good life,” Franks said. “In today's world, I believe that should be recognized.”
Theodora Polamalu presented Jennifer Wright with a prize basket Dec. 12 that contained an Apple iPad tablet; Beats by Dr. Dre headphones; items from the Brand Legendary clothing line; and a football, jersey, and photo, all autographed by Troy Polamalu.
The basket also contained Head and Shoulders products, which Polamalu promotes in a national advertising campaign.
Troy43.com has presented the Student of the Month award to deserving children and young adults across the nation for three years. Teachers of all grade levels from kindergarten to college are eligible to nominate a student in any of their current classes for the award, which recognizes academic achievement and strength of character.
Wright credits her earlier education at St. Sebastian School in Ross Township for teaching her to think of other people and goes on mission trips to poverty-stricken Appalachian regions in Kentucky with her church youth group, along with doing other volunteer work. She participates in the parish youth-group musical, which raises money for those in need in Peru and Appalachia.
“I truly believe I was put on this earth to help other people,” Wright said. “I think that I get a better experience in life if I'm not just thinking of myself.”
After she graduates from high school in the spring, Wright said, she plans to go to college and then medical school to become a physician who travels to Third World countries to help people with no medicine or regular access to doctors.
“I can never put into words how strongly and deeply I love helping others,” said Wright, the daughter of Colette and Terrence Wright of Ross Township.
To thank Franks for his nomination, Wright had the autographed Polamalu photo from her prize basket professionally framed and gave it to her teacher for Christmas with an attached note.
“The note stated that she didn't want me to feel left out,” Franks said. “That's the kind of person Jen Wright is.”
Melanie Donahoo is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Millvale’s recent hire aims to bring sustainability to job
- Kuhns Market in Hampton set to open one week before Thanksgiving
- Northern Tier Regional Library in Richland to host authors
- Local country-rock band to play at Shaler library
- Pine-Richland hires transporation director
- Shaler, surrounding communities remember Ava, support Campbell family
- Seniors find home at Mt. Nazareth Commons in Ross
- North Allegheny teens recognized for originality in Carnegie Library media-awards contest
- Shaler woman to make TV debut on Cooking Channel show
- McQuaid to share experiences to benefit Crisis Center North
- Hampton HS blood drive to honor 4-year-old Hampton resident fighting cancer