News Release, St. Mary’s County Public Schools
LEONARDTOWN, MD – St. Mary’s Association of Student Councils (SMASC) held elections for the Student Member of the Board of Education of St. Mary’s County (SMOB) position and Naggena Ohri was elected. Naggena is a current 10th grade student at Leonardtown High School and will replace the current Student Member of the Board, Laik Meadows from Leonardtown High School.
Naggena is an active member of her school’s Principal Advisory Committee, Student Council, National Honor Society, and varsity tennis team. Ms. Jill Mills, the principal of Leonardtown High School, described Naggena as “self-motivated and willing to take responsibility within a variety of settings while remaining true to self.”
Additionally, Mr. Brian Byrnes, Student Government Advisor at Leonardtown High School, stated Naggena has “great poise and constantly demonstrates respect for her audience.” Both Ms. Mills and Mr. Byrnes expressed Naggena’s commitment and her willingness to engage in dialogue are essential attributes that are vital to be successful to represent students of St. Mary’s County Public Schools.
Besides taking an active role within her school, Naggena has taken steps to better the larger community through her civic engagement. For example, Naggena and other student leaders developed a project to increase awareness of blood cancers. The project encompassed creating an event called Fly4aCure Kite Festival that was sponsored by the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
Through this student-led event, Naggena and other civic-minded students collected over $400,000 in donations and the team won Maryland’s Student(s) of the Year, as well as, National Students of the Year for their noteworthy cause. Furthermore, Naggena is a member of the Chick-Fil-A Leadership Academy that created care packages for military personnel deployed overseas. These actions illustrate Naggena’s drive and passion to promote the greater good.
When Naggena assumes this elected leadership position on July 1, 2019, her focus will center on empowering students’ voices and working with the Board of Education to ensure students have a say in the decision-making process. This will entail establishing a SMOB Advisory Committee with elected student representatives from each school’s student council to express their perspectives regarding the school system’s policies, as well as, school culture. Additionally, Naggena wants to concentrate her efforts on school safety and security within schools.
Naggena will become an official member of the Board of Education and provide an informed student viewpoint to the Board. While serving as the Student Member of the Board, Naggena will be sharing information with students and the community on an array of educational concerns. This student leadership position also includes being an active participant at student-related and school-related activities.