Fryer raises the bar as the 2010 PENTA Scholarship recipient

WESTBOROUGH _ For each of the last five years CEO Deborah Penta, of PENTA Communications, Inc. has awarded the Deborah A. Penta Female Leadership Award to a deserving female senior high school student, and each year she is amazed at the caliber of each recipient. The award, which was founded in 2005 by Penta, was developed to help inspire and acknowledge female high school students who excel in their leadership roles in academia, extracurricular and community activities. This year’s recipient is Westborough High School (WHS) senior Madeline “Maddie” Fryer. In the fall, Fryer will be attending John Hopkins University (JHU) and majoring in Public Health Studies, with a minor in Spanish.

“The 2010 PENTA Female Leadership Scholarship is important to me because of what it stands for and the goals it will help me to reach. This scholarship is all about encouraging young women to actively improve their community, and I hope to use the award to further my education and take a larger role in advancing the lives of those around me,” Fryer said.

Fryer’s resume reads like that of a person at least twice her age. Not only has she excelled academically, having completed 15 honors level courses, one accelerated math class and four advanced placement classes, she is also a top athlete participating in three sports (Lacrosse, Field Hockey and Basketball) and is the captain of two of them. Additionally, she has participated extensively in her community, volunteering at UMass Memorial Hospital, the Westborough Food Pantry, and has been a repeat participant for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Walk. She was also chosen to participate in the Westborough-Grafton Youth Leadership Conference, the LeadAmerica Congressional Student Leadership Conference, Ranger Spirit, and the Student Council (as a class representative). She is also a member of the National Honor Society, Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica, new student ambassador, peer leader and was a class officer.

“This year, we had more qualified candidates than ever before for this scholarship,” Penta said. “Madeline’s leadership achievements stood apart and were highly commendable. She has demonstrated exemplary leadership and excellence in her achievements in academics, sports and community.”

According to her guidance counselor at WHS, Pamela Pellegrino, Fryer is a true leader amongst her peers.

“I truly believe that our best leaders are just born…not made. That is the case with Maddie. Maddie’s personality is a ‘take charge and get it done’ type of personality. She knows how to lead, assist, encourage and energize groups,” Pellegrino said. “Maddie represents a powerful and driven young person.”

As WHS’s head girls’ varsity basketball coach, Scott Kittredge has coached Fryer for her entire high school career.

“She (Fryer) has a genuine desire to improve herself that manifests itself in numerous ways. Maddie is our hardest worker on the court,” Kittredge said. “Maddie applies any coaching points to her preparation outside of team activities. Those are life skills that will carry Maddie to success beyond athletics. She is a driven young woman who understands the benefit of hard work.”

UMass-Memorial Healthcare Patient Advocate Janice Day noted the many hours Fryer volunteered in the surgery department’s waiting room.

“She is a tireless worker, having given the most volunteer hours of any of our summer volunteers,” Day said. “She is not only a good worker; she is a bright and encouraging person. She is a true gem.”

Fryer said she is looking forward to attending JHU in the fall and plans on becoming involved in campus life.

“One way I anticipate becoming involved on campus is by joining the University’s Public Health Student Forum, which is a group that plans and executes different health education and awareness events on campus and around Baltimore. Other ways I plan on continuing to utilize my leadership skills are as a member of the field hockey team and through a program which partners JHU students with disadvantaged youth,” Fryer said.

“I have no doubt Maddie will be a success in whatever endeavors she chooses to pursue both during her higher education and beyond,” Kittredge said.

Penta concurred.

“Madeline is a role model for her peers and will continue to serve as a mentor for other women in the future.”