Emily Sidlow ’25 Wins High School Leadership Award

Junior Emily Sidlow is a winner of the High School Leadership Award, which is presented by Widener University, in partnership with NBC 10. The award acknowledges and honors the region’s best and brightest future leaders who take it upon themselves to make a significant difference in their schools and communities. The program recognizes students from high schools in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware who demonstrate courage and leadership — those who stand up for what is right, address a wrong and make a difference in their communities or schools.
According to Upper School Director Christie Reed, “Emily sets a tone with her peers by modeling respect, kindness and generosity. Not only does Emily excel in her classes as an academic thought leader and all-around valued contributor, but also she has been instrumental in our community as someone who has made a real difference for everyone.” 
Whether in class or participating in extracurriculars, Emily puts community first, with her efforts around Service Leadership. As a major contributor to the Starfish Club, she has devoted herself to long-term service projects that focus her efforts for the greatest impact. Each club was given the opportunity to have a booth at Homecoming to raise money for their club. Emily asked if she could have a booth for the Starfish Club, but rather than raise money, she used the opportunity to “raise kindness.” She opened a booth where she invited people to write kind notes that she collected in a jar to then share with those who needed something positive in their day. In exchange for writing a note of kindness, she gave out small prizes to those who participated.
For Thanksgiving, Emily again used her Starfish platform, and with a small group of friends, she initiated, communicated, planned and organized a simple but impactful event for all Pre-K – Grade 12 students. Each student was asked to make a hand turkey, and to write nice notes on them or decorate them the day before Thanksgiving vacation. The hand turkeys were all collected, and then as each and every student exited our all-school Thanksgiving assembly to leave for vacation, Emily handed out a “turkey,” making everyone’s day just a little brighter.  
“A quiet, but effective leader, Emily’s name comes up time and again as someone who is respected, responsible, positive and an authentic leader in our community,” explained Ms. Reed. “She is that person who always sits with the student who feels left out in order to draw them in. She is that person who stays after school to clean the Junior Lounge, even though no one asked her to do so. She is that person who sees a need and makes a difference without fanfare or fuss. Emily embodies what genuine leadership looks like.” 
Emily will receive a scholarship of $20,000 over four years if she chooses to enroll at Widener University as a freshman for undergraduate studies, where she would be named an Apogee Scholar. As an Apogee Scholar, students participate in a leadership development program at the Oskin Leadership Institute, which includes earning a Widener leadership certificate and participating in a variety of on-campus leadership development activities.