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TITLE I
 
DISTRICT WEBSITE
Scholar of Excellence: Proviso West NJROTC Student Takes the Lead

If you ask teachers to describe Vashthai Wallace, a Proviso West senior, they may say she is polite, sharp, very opinionated, and out spoken. What else could you expect from the Regimental Commander of one of the largest and best NJROTC units in the country?

Vashthai has participated in NJROTC every year since becoming a freshman at Proviso West. This year, as a senior, she stepped into a major leadership position as Regimental Commander. In that role, she helps train fellow cadets in her battalion. She plans some of NJROTC’s major events such as:  regiment day, the military ball, and their annual military inspection. She also helps coordinate the unit’s volunteer efforts at Northwestern University, Hines Veterans Hospital, and across the community.

“I have learned so much through NJROTC,” said Vashthai. “It has helped me learn to work with people. It has taught me time management, leadership, and discipline.  It has really given me a positive paradigm shift. One of the biggest things that I’ve learned is just to be a good example, and to lead by example.”

That lesson explains a great deal. In addition to her role as Regimental Commander for NJROTC, Vashthai also participates with the Proviso West Marching Band as a member of their flag team. She has a part-time job at a local retail store, and she still manages to take honors classes and maintain a 3.0 G.P.A.  Vashthai says she is able to stay sharp, committed, and inspired with the help of a few special people.

“My biggest inspirations are my mom and Commander Egler,” she said. “They have had a big part in helping me become the person that I am today. Because of them, I know what I want to do. I have morals and big goals.”

Vashthai’s mom, Ms. McKenzie, says knowing her role in her daughter’s success always causes a burst of pride.

“I just smile every time,” she said. “I tell her everyday to rise above.  I have taught her that her character speaks a lot about her, and what she does for others speaks as well. Every parent wants the best for their child. As a parent, I am elated by all that Vashthai has been able to accomplish. I am so proud.”

Congratulations, Vashthai, and thank you Ms. McKenzie! You are a vital part of Proviso Rising.

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