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Two seniors honored with leadership awards

Filed in Archive by on February 16, 2017

three people pose with awards

Left to right: Richard Sweeney, BC Physical Education Department Supervisor Fred Powers, and McKenzie Koch.

Congratulations to the Bethlehem Central High School students Richard Sweeney and McKenzie Koch for being honored with the Student Leadership Award from The Capital Zone chapter of the New York State Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (NYS AHPERD) on Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017.

NYS AHPERD honors one young woman and one young man from each district’s current year’s graduating class. Each student selected meets the criteria for achievement in the following areas:

  • High level of physical performance
  • Scholastic achievement: an “A” average in HS Physical Education and an overall GPA of 3.0 or above at the completion of junior year)
  • Exceptional leadership qualities: some leadership role within or outside the school (holding office in an organization, being captain of a team, a varsity club member or volunteer, for example)
  • Outstanding service to the school or town/city/community

Richard Sweeney

Richard is currently co-captain of the Bethlehem swim team. He has been a member of the team since his freshmen year. As a junior he swam at States as a member of the 200 medley relay team. He has also competed with the Delmar Dolfins since second grade. Richard is a member of the BCHS Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Pep Band, Jazz Band and Marching Band where he plays the tuba.  At school he volunteers as a math tutor, and is co-president of The Stock Market Club.  He was a volunteer counselor with Christian Camps of America, a volunteer instructor with STRIDE Sailing Adaptive Sports, a member of the Bethlehem Town Youth Court and the Bethlehem Lutheran Church Youth Group. Richard received a Gold Medal in the AASTP National Spanish Exam level 4, the Harvard Book Award, the Spirit of the Eagle award for Varsity Swimming and is a National Merit Scholar Semifinalist.

McKenzie Koch

McKenzie has been a dance instructor of tap, jazz, ballet and hip hop at the Dance Experience for the past two years and was a mentor coach at the Albany Recreational Lacrosse camp. At school McKenzie is president of the Key Club, is a math tutor, was a member of the Principal’s Advisory Committee and has participated in numerous plays including Oliver, Shakespeare’s The Tempest, and Damn Yankees.  She also achieved an advanced skill level placing 6th in the nation on the Grand Concours de Francais exam. McKenzie has received the Service Recognition Award for her work as a math tutor, and volunteering at the Pine Hollow Arboretum and Vacation Bible School, and was a HOBY Community Leadership Workshop nominee.