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‘Triple A’ honors to Lee, Hassing

By Staff | Jan 25, 2010

Kate Hassing and Nick Lee

Nick Lee and Kate Hassing will be recognized on Jan. 26 as Blue Earth Area High School’s 2010 Triple ‘A’ winners.

The purpose of the Triple ‘A’ or Academics, Arts and Athletics Award is to recognize and honor high school seniors who have excelled in the classroom, on the athletic field and in the fine arts.

In order to be eligible for the award, a student must be a high school senior at the time of nomination, have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher and participate in Minnesota State High School League sponsored athletics and fine arts activities.

Established in 1988, the purpose of the Triple ‘A’ program is to elevate academic standards and create greater awareness of League-sponsored activities and their values.

It also provides member schools of the League with the opportunity to participate in a statewide program that supports, promotes and recognizes academic and extra-curricular achievements.

Triple ‘A’ Award recipients are selected by a multi-level process involving the League’s member schools and administrative regions. League officials will announce the four award recipients (a girl and a boy from both a Class ‘A’ and Class ‘AA’ school) at an on-court recognition ceremony held on Saturday, Mar. 27, in conjunction with the 2010 Boys’ State Basketball Tournament. These four will receive a four-year $1,000 scholarship.

In the past, Blue Earth has done quite well in this competition. In fact, BEA has had two students who have won at the state level. Those two were Janie Hanson in 1999 and Daniel Murray in 2006.

Lee and Hassing were notified in mid-January they were BEAs finalists for the award.

Nick is the son of Bill Lee, Ankeny, Iowa, and Donna Nawrocki of Fairmont.

By the time he graduates in June, Lee will have participated in football and basketball all four years while in high school. He was involved in baseball as a freshman and has been a member of the track team since his sophomore year.

“My favorite sports have been basketball and football,” says Lee. He hopes to play one of these sports on a college team next year.

Other activities he has been involved in during his high school career include: Peer Helping, Dads Make a Difference, Rhymes of the Times, National Honor Society, student council, band and jazz band (playing trombone), choir and 12 Bucs Plus Change. He has also served as the Junior class president, vice-president of the Senior class, was a homecoming king candidate and participated in two courage and respect retreats.

He was named All-Conference and First Team All Area in football in 2009. Previously, he has been named All-Conference twice in basketball as well as Second Team All Area in basketball.

Among the subjects Lee registered for his senior year include: band, choir, pre-calculus, philosophy and world religions, challenge government, challenge literature, Shakespeare, Spanish 3, anatomy and physiology.

“My favorite high school subject was physics with Mr. Franta,” says Lee.

When he is not busy with school activities, he says he enjoys playing the drums, hanging out with his brothers (Jake and Sam), watching movies and sometimes playing video games. In the summer, he likes to golf.

Currently, Lee is looking seriously at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, South Dakota State University-Brookings and Augustana in Sioux Falls to pursue his studies.

“I have gotten a couple of scholarship offers already,” admits Lee. This may have some bearing on which school he eventually will attend.

At this time, he says he would like to study something in the sciences, possibly physics or pre-med.

“Keep your grades up,” advises Lee. “That’s what will get you into college.”

But even with the studying, he says students should allow time to “have fun.”

Kate is the daughter of Shawn and Sue Hassing of Blue Earth. She has an older brother, Shane, and a younger sister, Krista.

Upon completion of high school, Kate will have participated all four years in volleyball, basketball, track and field, band (playing tenor sax), choir, and student council.

She has also been involved with Peer Helping, DARE, Bridges, Madrigals, jazz band, the National Honor Society and has attended Courage and Respect retreats. This year, she was a homecoming queen candidate and is serving as the Senior class president.

Among the athletic honors she has received are: All-Conference volleyball and All-State Academic twice for volleyball, All-Conference basketball, All-Area Team basketball and four years as All-State Academic for track.

At the state track meet as a freshman, she took first place in the 4×4 relay and earned fifth place for True Team. In her sophomore year, Kate placed seventh in the triple jump and second place for True Team. As a junior, she took eighth place in the 400 as well as earning a first place in True Team.

“My favorite track event is the 400,” admits Kate.

In addition to participating in state track meets, she also earned a trip to state with the BEA basketball team.

Kate has been busy academically, too. Classes she is taking her senior year include: choir, band, pre-calculus, challenge government, economics, philosophy and world religions, novel study, calculus, anatomy and physiology, Spanish 3 and American literature.

“My favorite high school subject has been philosophy and world religions with Mr. Frederickson,” says Kate.

“I like to do volunteer work with young people,” says Kate. “The self-esteem camp, known as CMW, is fun and really beneficial to young kids.”

As for other hobbies, Kate says she enjoys spending time with her friends and family.

Her future plan is to major in bio-chemistry and molecular biology with a pre-med focus at either the University of Minnesota-Duluth campus or at Augustana College in Sioux Falls.

While in college, she also plans to run track.

“Try your hardest in all you do,” advises Triple ‘A’ winner, Kate. “And, enjoy high school while it lasts.”