Who says smart kids can’t have social skills?
Andrew Stricklin, a 17-year-old Lone Oak High School senior, smashes that stereotype. For starters, Stricklin is a founding member of the Paducah Ultimate Frisbee League, which convenes at Noble Park.
He’s also active in community-based 5K runs. Stricklin earned first place in his division in the Starfish Orphan Ministry 5K in 2009 and second place in his division in the United Way 5K in 2010.
Stricklin also was chosen for the Future Physicians program at Lourdes hospital, where he worked as an intern over the summer observing heart catheter insertions, surgeries and emergency room medicine.
Stricklin is an Eagle Scout, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. To earn his Eagle rank, Stricklin planned and led the renovation of a garden and patio area at Easter Seals West Kentucky. He and his crew stained the concrete on the patio to reduce glare, creating a more eye-friendly environment for the clients.
As a Troop 1 Eagle Scout, Stricklin served as a model for the “100 years of Scouting” mural depicted on the floodwall.
“We have a lot of tradition,” Stricklin said of Troop 1. “We’re the seventh-oldest chartered troop continuously in the nation.”
For his Eagle Scout project at Easter Seals, Stricklin earned a Duke of Paducah Award for Community Service and Kentucky Colonel Award for Benevolence and Community Service, both in 2009.
He is also active in his church, First Baptist Church of Paducah. He has participated in several mission trips, including a 2009 trip to Williamsburg in eastern Kentucky. He’s planning his next mission trip to Honduras in the spring. Stricklin also is involved with Kentucky Changers, a Baptist volunteer group that aids low-income, disabled or otherwise less-fortunate families with exterior home repairs. First Baptist is hosting the Changers in June. Stricklin plans to help the visiting volunteers as much as possible.
Troop 1 Assistant Scoutmaster Jimmy Kiser said that’s typical of Stricklin.
“Along with his leadership skills, he really cares about people and does the right thing,” Kiser said.
Stricklin also is involved in cross country, track and field, and academic team.
Despite such widespread participation in community events and extracurricular activities, Stricklin still manages to shine in the classroom. He boasts a 3.87 grade-point average and a near-perfect 35 ACT composite score.
Andrew Stricklin, son of David and Toni Stricklin, is the Murray State University Teen of the Week. Each Monday, the Sun features a different MSU Teen of the Week selected from nominees submitted by high school guidance counselors throughout western Kentucky and southern Illinois. In May, a Teen of the Year will be chosen from the weekly winners, earning a $5,000 scholarship to Murray State. Teen of the Week is part of the Sun’s Newspapers in Education program.
Stricklin’s passion is chemistry. He plans to attend Centre College in Danville or Union University in Jackson, Tenn., then continue on to graduate school, although he’s not yet sure which career path he’ll follow after obtaining a degree. To see Stricklin explain a chemical engineering project he’s involved with through the University of Kentucky College of Engineering Paducah campus, watch the video interview at paducahsun.com.
Lone Oak High School English teacher Stephanie Carter said Stricklin serves as an ideal role model for younger students.
“In addition to his exemplar grades, Andrew shows himself to be respectful and respectable in his day to day dealings with his classmates and his teachers,” Carter said. “Andrew is the ideal student, always conscientious of the example he sets and the reputation he upholds.”
Contact Danielle Ray, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8657.