‘Work Hard and Good Things Happen,’ is a way of life for Rachel Rice of Gothenburg and Paola Briones of Lexington as their efforts paid off in being named the Elks Teens of the Month by the Cozad Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks Lodge, Number 2250.
The duo of Rice and Briones, have maintained elite academic portfolios while participating in numerous activities at Gothenburg and Lexington throughout their high school campaigns.
Rachel Rice is the daughter of Eric and Amy Rice. Rachel maintains a 4.0 GPA while being instrumental in the success of a variety of activities at Gothenburg High School and maintaining her position on the All A’s Honor Roll throughout her prep career.
Being involved in a variety of activities would be an understatement when describing the involvement of Rice at Gothenburg High School.
Rachel has been a member of the GHS Tri-M Society since her sophomore year when the group was founded and is currently the President. This past year she was the drum majorette for the Marching Band. She has been a member of the band and choir since her freshman year and has earned Superior ratings at District Music each year in instrumental and vocal music. Her musical talents also reached the stage to accompany her acting expertise. Rice has been a key contributor to the Gothenburg High School Musical all four years of high school, with major roles the past three shows that included ‘The Music Man,’ ‘The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz’.
Rachel Rice’s acting talents also were utilized as a member of the very successful One-Act Play Production team for Gothenburg. Rice has been a contributor all four years of prep school, while earning accolades and hardware at many events.
As a member of the Gothenburg Speech Team and National Forensics League, Rice has excelled in winning many accolades and participating in the State Championship events.
In the Science Olympiad event that she has participated in the past three years she was a regional champion for two years and won the State Champion honor this past year.
Rice was inducted into the Cozad High School National Honor Society as a Junior and will graduate as a two-year member of the elite organization. She has been a two-year member of the Rotary Interact Club, as a Chair Person both campaigns.
Being a leader in activities isn’t the only place that Rice enters the spotlight as she has been a four-year member of the Gothenburg Student Council and is currently the Secretary.
Rachel Rice has been a loyal member of the First Presbyterian Church throughout her high school years and has been a Sunday School Teacher for the past four years and assisted with Vacation Bible School as well.
“I consider Rachel to be the “Gold” standard when it comes to the classroom,” expressed Gothenburg Director of Music Tom Belanger. “She is very focused and organized. Rachel is kind to her classmates, yet not afraid to offer feedback if needed. She sees the big picture beyond the walls of high school.”
Paola Briones is the daughter of Armando Briones and Patricia Avila. Paola maintains a 4.68 GPA while being a very active student in a plethora of activities at Lexington High School.
Excelling in extracurricular activities has been the method of Briones success during her prep years. Paola has been a member of the Lexington Marching Band and Jazz Band all four years of high school. She has been the section leader for the saxophones the last two years. She has achieved Superior ratings for her solo and small group ensembles at District Music Contests.
Briones has been a key contributor for the Lexington High School Pep Club since her freshman year. She was recently inducted into the National Society for High School Scholars. Paola has been involved in the leadership of the student body at Lexington High School as a member of the Student Council and the L-Club during her tenure the past four years. She is currently the Vice President of the Senior Class at Lexington High School.
Briones has been crucial to the success of others as a Peer Tutor and a HOSTS participant as well as assisting with Parent/Teacher conferences as an interpreter.
Athletically, Paola has been a member of the Minutemaids Volleyball and Soccer squads throughout her four-year prep career at Lexington.
“Paola’s work was always very thorough, well thought out and articulate,” explained Lexington Social Studies Instructor Eric Bell. “Paola is constantly aware of the little things that make a person successful. She takes tremendous pride in her work, yet she doesn’t boast in it. She lets her work speak for itself.”