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Congratulations to Wahoo's 2021 Midland University/Pinnacle Bank 'Outstanding High School Leaders' Award winners (from left): Katelyn Urban, Taylor Luben, Luke Polacek, Cody Bailey and Caleb Malousek. (Not pictured: Kyan Lausterer and Gavin Pokorny)

Midland University/Pinnacle Bank announces newest leadership award winners

Seven WHS students honored as "Outstanding High School Leaders" & awarded $25,000 renewable scholarships!

Pinnacle Bank and Midland University recently announced the winners of the 2021 Pinnacle Bank/Midland University Outstanding High School Leaders Award. The award is presented to Nebraska high school juniors to acknowledge leadership ability and achievement, skills vital to future endeavors, and desired qualities at Pinnacle Bank and Midland University.

Each award winner will receive a renewable $25,000 scholarship to Midland University, which could ultimately become a $100,000 educational prize!

Seven Wahoo High School juniors were selected to receive the award. Each honoree completed an application, which included writing essays, and secured teacher recommendations that supported his or her bid to be named an award winner. This year’s winners are Cody Bailey, Kyan Lausterer, Taylor Luben, Caleb Malousek, Gavin Pokorny, Luke Polacek, and Katelyn Urban.

In the application process, each winner was asked to discuss two or three values that he or she felt that effective leaders possess.

"Communication helps connect the people on a team and strengthens the bonds between each member. Effective communication also draws new people to the team who might have common interests and that strengthens the team even more,” stated Malousek.

Polacek believes that effective leaders must adapt to any situation. Bailey agreed. 

“Successful leaders need to be prepared to react positively to something that was unexpected," Bailey said. Both Bailey and Polacek pointed out that good listening is also a crucial leadership skill.

“Everyone in the group needs to feel included and know that his or her point of view matters,” Bailey added.

Urban mentioned that it is important that effective leaders push themselves and their teams outside of their comfort zones, stating that "growth isn’t always comfortable and you don’t know what you are really capable of unless you push yourself."

“Pinnacle Bank and Midland University have to be commended for their commitment to fostering leadership growth in our youth,” said Wahoo Public Schools Counselor John Harris. "Leadership isn’t something that comes naturally. A leader learns skills from role models such as parents, teachers, coaches and mentors. By rewarding students for practicing leadership and placing them in an environment, on campus, where they will not only learn from each other but experience educational and corporate leadership excellence, Midland University is accelerating the growth curve for this next generation of leaders!" 

Congratulations, leaders!

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Midland University/Pinnacle Bank announces newest leadership award winners

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