Outstanding senior to study nursing

By Jason Arndt

Katie Fruth puts her heart into everything she does, even if it means sacrificing sleep, but credits her parents for keeping her grounded.

Katie Fruth

Fruth, of the Village of Raymond, spent her four years at Union Grove Union High School balancing multiple sports, staying involved with Raymond 4-H, tutoring students while achieving a cumulative 4.276 grade point average to rank fourth among her 2019 classmates.

Fruth, a National Honor Society member, also volunteered as a tutor at an area elementary school in multiple subjects.

In addition, she has taken an interest in local veterans, working 16-20 hours per week as a certified nursing assistant at the Union Grove Veterans Home.

“It is really, really hard, I don’t sleep,” Fruth said, adding her parents Barry and Cindy often encourage her to rest. “They just helped me so much and kind of helped me keep my schedule intact.”

When asked why she sacrifices sleep – Fruth described her determination in one word – passion.

“I am just very passionate in everything I do, which is how I am able to do so many things,” she said. “It can be really stressful and really hard, but it is what I love to do.”

Fruth, who took five of eight AP classes her senior year, participated in multiple community service activities while breaking the school track and field record in the girls shot put.

Fruth finished fourth at the WIAA Division 1 state track and field meet at Veterans Memorial Stadium on the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse campus in early June.

For her efforts, Fruth was selected as the Westine Report Outstanding Senior for Union Grove High School by editorial staff. She was chosen from a field of four seniors nominated by school staff.

Raymond roots
Fruth, who attended Raymond School, was an eight-year member of Raymond 4-H Club and played an active role at the Racine County Fair as an exhibitor.

“Originally, I did photography and food,” she said. “I did a quilt, which did very well at the fair, and then I showed rabbits and sheep.”

She also stayed involved with Raymond School as a volunteer for the school’s PTO fundraiser in multiple years.

Additionally, Fruth was a member of a local Girl Scout troop.

All season performer
In her four years at Union Grove High Fruth played four different sports.

She played golf for four years in the fall and was a member of the girls basketball program for her first three seasons in the winter.

Fruth, who played softball her first two seasons, transitioned to track and field entering her junior year and found immediate success.

As a junior, she captured a Southern Lakes Conference championship in the shot put and finished second at regionals to qualify for sectionals.

“I threw a little bit in middle school but decided to play softball my first two years in high school,” Fruth told the Westine Report in May. “I decided to return to track my junior year and it ended up being a good decision.”

After Fruth finished fifth at sectionals, she wanted a better result as a senior. She joined the Madison Throw Club on the advice of her coaches.

The following year, as a senior and team captain, she claimed conference titles in the shot put and discus and later qualified for state in both events.

“I’m a very competitive person that doesn’t like to lose,” Fruth said in May. “I don’t do anything half-heartedly.”

Along with her four sports, she joined the school’s shooting club as a senior.

Like athletics, she put her heart and passion into academics and other extra-curricular activities, including organizations promoting health.

Health advocate
Fruth joined HOSA, known as Future Health Professionals, and became a state finalist.

Meanwhile, she dedicated herself to area causes, like the Walworth HEAL program and promoted healthy eating and exercise to children.

As a Youth in Governance member on the Health and Human Services Board, she worked multiple First Friday events, where she promoted the Fostering Children program.

Fruth said helping area children has been one of the most memorable experiences she has had.

“One thing that I did was that I volunteered with a local school in Burlington and had many underprivileged children that did not have any winter clothing,” said Fruth, who collected coats, scarves and mittens with some of her classmates.

Other organizations Fruth was involved in were FFA and DECA. She also served as a delegate for Badger Girls State.

Committed to service
Fruth helped the Union Grove Chamber of Commerce with Fourth of July events and worked multiple food stands supporting Kiwanis at the Racine County Fair.

Fruth will attend the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh in the fall, where she received acceptance into the Honors College and Nurse Scholar Program. She also plans to compete as a recruited athlete on the Titans track and field team.

Fruth, a prospective nursing major, also plans to pursue the ROTC program.

“One of my best friends growing up just joined the Marines, he is actually currently deployed overseas,” she said. “I saw how the military changed him and decided it was something I wanted to try.”

“I will be doing military schooling at the same time I will be getting my nursing degree.”

A look at the other nominees
Here are capsules on the other three nominees for Westine Report Outstanding Senior:

Samuel Beyer
Beyer, son of Kaia and Joel Beyer, is the Class of 2019 salutatorian. He will attend Baylor University as an admit into the Honor College and plans to advance to medical school with hopes of becoming a surgeon.

Beyer, a four-year honor roll student, was a member of National Honor Society and earned AP Scholar with Honor designation.

In addition, the Academic Excellence Award honoree garnered multiple scholarships, including the President’s Gold and Getterman awards.

Beyer, on the golf team for four years, also served as a tutor in science, math and Spanish.

Within the community, he volunteered at the Ascension emergency room, Southern Wisconsin Center, coached a youth basketball team and hosted foreign exchange students.

Beyer, who plans to enter the health care field, found his experiences at Ascension and Southern Wisconsin enlightening.

“Volunteering at Ascension Hospital’s emergency room, I have been able to spend time helping others in a setting similar to my intended career path,” he wrote in his biography form.

At Southern Wisconsin Center, he helped plan and led activities for people with disabilities.

As a foreign exchange host, he and his family welcomed students from Spain and Mexico in one program. The other program, known as the Project 143 Orphan Hosting Program, allowed the Beyers to bring into Latvian orphans.

“My family has had two opportunities to host orphans from Latvia for a month,” he wrote in his biography form. “We have been so honored to be able to provide a family for these children, whom we continue to communicate with on a daily basis.”

Beyer also held jobs at McDonald’s, Subway, Ives Grove Golf Links and Neo-Brake Systems during his high school years.

Alexis Daigle
Daigle, the valedictorian, is the daughter of Kim and Steve Daigle and plans to attend the University of Missouri-Columbia and major in International Business and Marketing.

She garnered the Biegel Scholarship.

In her four years at Union Grove, Daigle was on the Honor Roll and received induction into National Honor Society.

She was involved with Key Club for four years, serving as both vice president and president, Academic Bowl for four years, and earned the title of American Literature Champion as a senior.

Daigle also served as treasurer and president with DECA, an organization she was involved in for three years. A four-year member of ITS, she was the secretary and treasurer.

Daigle was on the student newspaper staff for two years.

Meanwhile, outside the classroom, Daigle competed on the track and field team for one year, worked at Bristol Renaissance Faire last summer and recently gained employment at Chick-Fil-A.

Morgan Lekschas
Lekschas, daughter of Angel and Kurt Lekschas, plans to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison and major in chemistry.

She was on the Honor Roll and earned induction into National Honor Society. She became involved in both the Art Club and yearbook for one year.

Lekschas, a three-year Key Club member, volunteered within the community for the student organization.

Outside of school, Lekschas worked at RRK Associates.