Photo by Cerys Lowe

June 16, 2020

Academy students commended for their ‘Caring Heart’

In the Seventh-day Adventist Church, we believe teaching young people to be actively involved in witnessing and service activities is central to the...

In the Seventh-day Adventist Church, we believe teaching young people to be actively involved in witnessing and service activities is central to the educational goals of the school and the mission of the church. For this reason, the secondary student Caring Heart Award for Christian service has been established to give recognition to those students who have demonstrated a personal commitment to active service and witnessing activities. 

Through the Caring Heart Award, the importance of witnessing and service activities is emphasized and given appropriate recognition along with academic, athletic, music and other school awards and honors. An additional purpose of this award is to foster increased awareness and participation in witnessing and service activities by all students. To be eligible, the student should be a full-time junior or senior student with a strong citizenship record who has given evidence of a personal commitment to witnessing and service activities by exhibiting initiative and responsibility for carrying through, serving as an overall example on the campus. Criteria also might include significant and varied participation in service-type activities, witnessing experiences, and mission trips (inside and/or outside the country). 

The North American Division (NAD) Office of Education provides one Caring Heart Award to each NAD-accredited senior academy that has selected an eligible candidate. The award will consist of a special scholarship award certificate with a value of $500, paid by the Union, and accompanied by a plaque and engraved Bible provided by the NAD Office of Education. The scholarship award may be used by the student award recipient for either funding a mission trip experience, or as tuition assistance at the Adventist school of their choice. 

The recipients for the 2019‒2020 school year are:  


Andrews Academy  

As a senior, Jenisca Samuel was chosen for the Caring Heart because she exemplifies the characteristics of this award. Jenisca held an extremely strong citizenship record and had a history of commitment to witnessing through her participation in many of our school programs. During her junior year Jenisca went on our mission trip where she assisted in building a home church for the local people. She was consistently kind and friendly in her dealings with everyone and befriended all with whom she came in contact. She had a ready smile and a hug for anyone she met. She was an absolute joy and will be greatly missed at AA. 


Battle Creek Academy  

Elizabeth Bateman was a quiet and humble student who got things done. As a member of the student association (SA), she served other students by helping to plan and run school events and activities. She was a good model student with no disciplinary issues at all. She played the trombone very well and used her musical talent to praise God. Elizabeth was involved with her church Pathfinder Club, church praise team, vacation Bible school, and a church hospitality team. She volunteered to help with Cadet Band, served in SA, faithfully supported her class’ efforts for hot lunches and concessions, and did what was assigned to her without complaint. She was kind to everyone and had a heart for God. 


Grand Rapids Adventist Academy  

Elizabeth Green was a senior described as a person with a daily walk with Jesus. She was caring, kind, joyful and often could be seen going out of her way to help someone. Generally soft-spoken, she was often the first person to recognize a need and hurried to assist. Elizabeth also had a way of considering how others might feel about an event or conversation and always tried to make them feel at ease. These qualities were the primary reasons which endeared her to her fellow students and influenced their decision to select her as Student Association president. Elizabeth’s contribution to our school was always positive and influential; our school is better because she lived her life as a child of God.  









Hinsdale Adventist Academy  

Anneliese Tessalee was a student at HAA for 13 years. In her academy years, Anneliese emerged as a true leader with a heart for service. She served as a youth leader at church, class secretary, class vice president, volleyball team chaplain, and a Pathfinder TLT. Most recently, Anneliese served as Senior Class secretary, yearbook co-editor, the Youth spiritual head at church, and the National Honor Society president where she put a renewed emphasis on community service through events like helping at the Rx Mobile Food Pantry. Beyond these responsibilities, Anneliese chose to be an active member of all the academy’s music ensembles where she was able to share her talents to praise God and bless others. Outside of school, she could often be found leading praise services and AY programs at church, volunteering at Health Clinics and memory care facilities, or even preaching for youth vespers programs. Anneliese participated in mission trips to places like Holbrook, Ariz., and was planning on going to the U.S. Virgin Islands for her Senior Class trip to help with hurricane relief efforts. Next steps for Anneliese are to study chemistry and music. 




Indiana Academy  

Julio Santana, from Lakewood, Ohio, was a senior. He was overwhelmingly selected by the faculty and staff of Indiana Academy to receive the Caring Heart award for his demonstrated conviction to consistently serve others. Always willing to volunteer, to spend extra time praying with his peers as a resident assistant, and to continually seek opportunities to share Christ’s love with others, Julio exemplified what Christian care for others could look like. With graduation from Indiana Academy behind him, Julio plans to pursue a major in music performance and theology.   


Great Lakes Adventist Academy  

Myah Riggs-Wright has a servant heart. She always took the initiative to look for opportunities to serve others. A comforter, encourager and helper, Myah placed the needs of others before her own, oftentimes volunteering to do the least desirable tasks. The outflow of Myah's love for others brought joy to all with whom she came in contact. Her Christ-like service and character were a true blessing to our GLAA campus, our church, and our community. She had planned to participate in a mission trip to Cuba this year. Although circumstances didn’t allow that trip,  Myah desires to continue to serve others. 










Wisconsin Academy  

Alice Uwiduhaye was a junior who lit up our campus with her smile and sunny disposition. She especially loved to pray for people and encourage them. Alice had a passion for introducing people to Jesus Christ. One of her favorite activities was GLOWing, where a group went out and knocked on doors. Before delivering the GLOW tracts, the students sang a hymn and prayed with the people. Alice faithfully knelt to pray, even when people’s porches were icy. She has also canvassed and encouraged others to spend the summer doing it with her. A blessing to our school, we were so glad to have her here.