(This story was first published in the June 6, 2013 edition of the Vermont Standard.)
By Katy Savage
When science teacher Tim Brennan asked his students to induce a fundamental law about momentum, Anthony Bald was the only student able to collect data.
“He’s been an impressive student since day one,” Brennan said.
Bald will graduate Woodstock Union High School as the valedictorian June 14.
He walks away with countless academic awards, including math excellence awards, French awards and the Dartmouth College Book Award. Bald has been involved in several activities.
On the Math Team, he got a perfect score in competitions not once, but three times, a rare achievement. Bald solved problems on topics that aren’t seen in a typical math course.
When asked to complete a research project in AP English, Bald wrote 17 pages about the Israeli– Palestinian conflict.
He argued the conflict, which began in the early 20th century, could be solved by a one-state solution.
“Mrs. Fields said it was one of the best research papers she’s read,” Bald said. “I was really proud of that.”
But Bald doesn’t need validation to prove his good work. He would work hard just the same. Bald’s mom, Ellen, has never had to tell her son to do his homework.
“He has an internal drive and an internal work ethic,” Ellen said. “He doesn’t need validation. That’s not what drives him.”
Bald started running with the cross country team two years ago. Both years, the team made it to the New England Cross Country Championships.
“(Cross country) is definitely more mental than physical,” Bald said. “Afterwards you can feel proud of what you accomplished and really see the improvements in the times and ways you feel during a race.”
Bald had a foot injury during the championships and didn’t run his best time, but similar to his academies, winning was never a goal of Bald’s. “He doesn’t have to win to enjoy,” Ellen said. “He has self-confi dence, maturity.” Bald is a role model for other students. For the past three years he’s used study-hall time to volunteer for Student Outreach Services (S.O.S.) as a student counselor.
Bald has attended Alcoholic Anonymous meetings as part of S.O.S. training. He has helped students with family issues, stress, depression, bullying and peer pressure.
“Counseling is pretty eye opening,” Bald said. “I like to have an impact on the lives of students in high school because it can be a pretty stressful time for everyone.”
Bald said, he, too, has experienced pressure to do well on AP tests and SATs, and make it to a competitive college.
“I think he’s a good listener and I think people find him personable,” Ellen said. “He learned a lot about societal issues.”
Bald will fly 3,000 miles away to attend Pomona College in California in the fall. Bald wants to eventually do research on how an economy can impact not just the lives of a small town, but a whole state or region.
“I want to do research that has an impact on what people do and how they connect to an environment,” Bald said. “Whatever research I do, I hope it will be impactful in some way.”