Two local high school students have earned MHSAA Scholar-Athlete Awards.
Amos Norland from Dollar Bay-Tamarack City High School and Makennah Uotila from Ontonagon High School will each receive $2,000 scholarships from the Farm Bureau Insurance Company, which has sponsored the program for 34 years.
Norland won the U.P. Division Three individual cross country championship last fall, and has also lettered in track and field and basketball. He has served as class president, student council president, and president of the Dollar Bay National Honor Society chapter. He plans to attend Western Michigan University, and study kinesiology.
Uotila is a four-sport participant, with letters and honors in cross country, track and field, volleyball and basketball. She has served as president of the student council and the Ontonagon chapter of the National Honor Society. She plans to study biology, with a concentration on natural resources, but has not yet committed to a college.
Here are their expanded biographies, as provided by the Michigan High School Athletic Association:
Amos Norland, Dollar Bay
Ran four seasons of varsity cross country, is playing third season of varsity basketball and will compete in fourth of track & field this spring. Earned all-state cross country honors all four years, helping his team to two Finals titles and a runner-up finish and winning the Upper Peninsula Division 3 individual championship as a senior. Earned all-state in multiple track events and helped that team win a Finals title as well. Earned all-league in basketball. Served as cross country team leader and basketball captain. Serving fourth year on student council and as president, and also serving as class president for fourth year. Participating in third year of National Honor Society, serving as chapter president, and serving third year on Student Leadership Advisory Council of the Keweenaw, as director of resources. Playing fourth year in band and as saxophone section leader. Will attend Michigan Technological University and study kinesiology.
Essay Quote: “As good as it feels to beat a rival basketball team or win a race, demonstrating good sportsmanship is valuable in a deeper way. Winning gives you a victory. Sportsmanship builds character, forms relationships, and provides you with important lifelong lessons. My cross country coach teaches us how to be respectful almost as much as he teaches us how to run. As a result, we have grown as runners, but more so, we have grown to show the values of being a good sport.”
Makennah Uotila, Ontonagon
Ran three years of varsity cross country and played four of varsity volleyball, playing fourth season of varsity basketball and will compete in fourth of track & field this spring. Helped track & field team to last two Upper Peninsula Division 3 Finals championships and basketball team to District title as junior. Earned all-state honorable mention in basketball and all-Upper Peninsula in cross country; also earned all-league in volleyball and won individual Finals title in long jump multiple seasons. Served as volleyball and basketball team captain. Participating in fourth year in student government and third as National Honor Society officer, serving as president of both, and also has served as secretary of Future Farmers of America chapter. Earned FFA District award for public speaking and attended American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program. Participating in fourth year of TANGO service group. Is undecided where she will attend college but intends to study biology with a concentration in natural resources.
Essay Quote: “I always felt as if I was kind to those on and off the court, but I have limited time left to consciously exercise this abundance of empathy as a senior athlete. Learning from the experience firsthand, kindness can change a mindset. In a setting that teaches so many lessons, kindness is a lesson that can be learned and taken with an athlete everywhere life takes them; I’ll be taking sportsmanship with me.”