Lessons learned through the Future Business Leaders of America have guided Lacey Tilsley through Telstar High School in Bethel. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

BETHEL — On one hand is Lacey Tilsley’s desire to help with problems such too much trash. On her other hand is her desire to make a sandwich while not needing to get off the couch.

While doing research for her experimental design class, Tilsley was fascinated to find out how far the world of robotics has come. “There are really cool things already out there, like robots that go through rivers and pick up trash,” the Telstar High School senior said.

“I want to do things like that to solve problems,” she said. “But, the laziness in me has always wanted to make a robot that can go grab something from the fridge and bring it to me while I am watching TV.”

“Everyone needs to take some breaks. Not do very much sometimes,” she said.

Tilsley deserves the break, Melissa Poston, Tilsley’s English teacher, said. “Lacey is my go-to person. Lacey is always on top of things.”

Tilsley will graduate seventh in Telstar’s Class of 2023.


“I feel like it comes pretty easy to me,” Tilsley said. “All the science and math stuff is not that hard because it really interests me. English comes a little bit harder.”

Despite her struggles in English, Tilsley still had one of the highest scores in her class on her Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition exam.

“Lacey is very good at grabbing onto information that one needs to be successful,” Poston said.

Tilsley, the president of the Future Business Leaders of America chapter at Telstar, said business and personal finance classes have especially helped her find success.

“You don’t have to necessarily be interested in business to benefit from it, she said.  

Financial literacy, sending formal emails, making formal phone calls and the importance of having a good credit score are all lessons Tilsley has learned through her involvement in FBLA.


“It makes things so much harder,” she said, if one has a bad credit score.

“I feel like a very important part of an education is getting to know all of the financial stuff you need to know before you go out into the real world,” she said.

Tilsley lives in Bryant Pond village in Woodstock and is the class treasurer. She is a member of the Student Council and is on the school’s Civil Rights Team. She is a member of the National Honor Society and is involved with the school’s theater program.

She also collects cardboard.

“I have a closet full of cardboard that I can cut out and build different structures and things with,” Tilsley said. “I can make a cool little Minecraft sword and paint it for a friend or build a cool little structure to film a video with. Whatever I feel like making. It’s really fun,” she said.

Tilsley will have the opportunity to make more things when she starts college this fall at Western New England University in Springfield, Massachusetts. She will major in engineering.


“I really like solving problems and actually making things,” she said. “You need to be able to problem solve in everything, especially in engineering.”

Tilsley said she would tell others hoping to make the top 10 of their graduating class two things: Turn your work in on time and be proud of what you are turning in to your teacher.

“Make sure what you are passing in is something that you are proud of,” she said. “It’s too easy in some classes to write something quickly and get a OK grade on it. Sit down and look at it for a couple of minutes. OK, this will pass but what do I need to do to make this better.

“Really pay attention to going that extra mile,” she said.

This is the last article in a series featuring high school seniors as graduation season nears. In the series, the Sun Journal profiled a randomly chosen top 10 student or the equivalent from 18 high schools in central and western Maine.

Related Headlines

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.