Eddie Hebert, in the Forestry and Wood Harvesting program, has been named the Foster CTE Center Student of the Year. He is seen at right with from left Kyle Couture, instructor Rodney Spiller, Trent Tibbetts, Tucker Nicholas and Junior Tyler. File photo

FARMINGTON — Eddie Hebert of Starks has been named the 2020 Foster Career and Technical Education Center Student of the Year.

Center Director Melissa Williams said, “Eddie has worked hard to overcome some difficult times all while maintaining his school, sports, CTE, and personal life. He is always friendly and willing to lend a hand or an ear. He is an all-around great person.”

Hebert was nominated by Forestry and Wood Harvesting program instructors Rodney Spiller and Dean Merrill. He was one of seven students nominated this year.

Hebert is an advanced student in the program.

In February during an interview he said, “It’s just a wonderful atmosphere. When you want to be here, are devoted to the program, you learn what they’re teaching.”

Hebert’s dad was a UMaine graduate who was a forester for 40+ years.

“The biggest thing I learned here is knowing how they run a classroom is how I would want to run a business or shop,” Hebert said in February. “Nobody is inferior to anyone else.

“I know firsthand. When you feel inferior to somebody you’re working with, you don’t want to be there, don’t work as hard.

“They’ve taught me lots of wonderful things; that’s the biggest.”

Williams said students are nominated and presented to the CTE staff by the staff nominator(s), followed by a robust discussion, then all staff vote anonymously.

“It has been a pleasure to have Eddie in our Foster CTE Center Forestry program,” she said. “He has much to offer to peers and adults alike.”

Williams said the SOTY recognition won’t be the same this year.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all gatherings have been canceled,” she said. “Under normal circumstances, the student would be recognized by the entire group of CTEs from around the state of Maine (27) with a dinner and recognition ceremony at the Green Ladle in Lewiston.

“We are trying to find great ways to celebrate Eddie and honor him in socially appropriate ways!”

Foster CTE Center staff said, “Eddie Hebert is a wonderful student and important member of our tech classroom community. He is a bright young man and quite modest about his abilities. He has an uncanny ability to befriend anyone he meets.”

Hebert was voted Student of the Semester by his peers.

His instructors said, “Eddie has endured some incredible challenges in his life and his positive can-do attitude has shown that he can overcome any obstacle placed in front of him. He is a beacon of strength and leadership at home and at school.”

Hebert is a senior at Mt. Blue High School. He will be attending the School of Forest Resources at the University of Maine Orono next fall. He has been signed as a preferred walk-on for the Black Bears football team.

While at Mt. Blue, Hebert played baseball and lacrosse for one year. He excelled on the football team and was named an All-Conference Player. He was a member of the orchestra for two years and participated in YETI (Youth Expeditions to Ignite).

Hebert has been a volunteer counselor for Camp at the Eastward and has worked for that camp and at Hannafords.

His mom, Jennifer Hebert wrote, “I am super proud of Eddie. He has accomplished so much. Not only has he done well in school but he also works, volunteers and helps our family in so many ways. I am so pleased he plans to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a Licensed Forester.

“I am blessed to have a son who is kind, generous and a joy to be around. We are honored that Eddie was named student of the year.”

Williams said she wished all nominated students could be recognized.

“We are fortunate to have such wonderful students and families!” she said.


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