Cambridge-Isanti High School and several of its students received special recognition Monday for excelling in a nationwide competition put on by the U.S. Army.
Last fall, the Army STRONG Challenge invited a total of 30 high schools in different states across the country to compete in this interactive event, which challenges students’ physical fitness and academic abilities. CIHS finished second in the nation, with the top three team scores totaling 2,488. Only a high school in Pennsylvania scored higher with the top three teams scoring 2,587.
Sgt. Brian Webb, of the Army Recruiting Center in Cambridge, awarded bronze, silver and gold medals to the top teams from CIHS on March 25 in the school’s gymnasium. With him were Sgt. 1st Class Charles Rachunek, center commander for the Army Recruiting Center; staff from the school’s career center; and student presenter Cody Mahrer.
Earning gold were CIHS students Tyler Labatte, Chance Laidly and Codie Auren-Petschl.
Taking silver were Cody Skog, Nathan Nassif, Travis Holt, Charles Schlichtmann, Nathan Henderson and Levi Holland.
Bronze medal winners included Carson Burns, Michael Colbaugh, Hannah Thiry and Colton Banks.
The Army STRONG Challenge serves as a competition to determine the most physically and mentally fit high schools. Each high school that participates is awarded a participation banner to hang in its school. The top five high schools are awarded a trophy and an additional banner to recognize their excellence in fitness and academics.
The competition is held in conjunction with a participating high school’s physical education classes during one school day. Students can participate in a five-part challenge consisting of both physical and mental areas. They compete in teams of four to six, and team scores are recorded based on repetitions and correct answers.