Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School senior Chantel DeJesus has been name DAR’s Citizen of the Year. Next fall she will enter Harvard University, with an eventual goal to become a doctor. Supplied photo

PARIS — Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School’s principal Paul Bickford has announced that senior Chantel DeJesus has been selected by the Molly Ockett Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution as its Oxford Hills citizen of the year.

“Chantel is an outstanding leader, scholar and change agent who has made a significant positive impact on our school and community,” Bickford said in an email statement. “As Senior Class President, a Viking Mentor, and a student representative on the High School’s leadership team, Chantel has made her mark on OHCHS. I am thrilled that she is being recognized as our school’s DAR Good Citizen Award recipient.”

DeJesus had no idea of the honor that awaited her when she was asked to report to the high school’s main office to sign some forms. She did not realize she had been nominated.

“I am really honored,” she told the Advertiser Democrat. “It shows that the work and service that I’ve done in the community is being seen.”

Student citizens of the year are selected based on their community service, dependability and leadership in and out of school. DeJesus displays these attributes through her positions of responsibility within OHCHS.

It is not just DAR that has taken notice of DeJesus’ abilities. After graduating from OHCHS this June, the next stop for her will be Cambridge – Harvard University to be specific. Harvard has been her lifelong dream; it was the only school she applied to for early acceptance and she made her dream come true.

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Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School Principal Paul Bickford says that senior Chantel DeJesus, the school’s most recent recipient of the DAR Citizen of the Year Award ” is an outstanding leader, scholar and change agent who has made a significant positive impact on our school and community.” Supplied photo

DeJesus plans to major in neurobiology and then enter the medical field, possibly becoming an anesthesiologist.

As a member of the school’s leadership team, DeJesus is one of two students who act as liaisons to a staff committee tasked with finding workable solutions for identified school issues, providing student perspectives and feedbacks. Some of the results of the committee’s work include installing vape detectors in school restrooms and an electronic hall pass system where students scan a QR code to communicate with teachers about needing to leave the classroom.

DeJesus also serves as a Viking Mentor, the program that matches upper classmen with incoming freshmen to help them ease into the rigors of high school. Mentors greet students on their first day of school and support their charges throughout the years individually and in monthly group meetings.

As president of her class DeJesus is heavily involved in organizing events and scheduling during milestone weeks at school like Homecoming and Winter Carnival. She also works closely with OHCHS’ student body president on different projects, and serves as treasurer for the school’s chapter of the National Honor Society.

DeJesus’ life and school experiences have culminated in the resilience and perseverance that helped her win service awards and entry into the top university in the country. She moved to Oxford Hills from the Philippines when she was about five.

“I’ve had obstacles that I needed to overcome, like learning to speak English, that my peers may not have,” DeJesus said. “I love sharing my story. It’s been integral for me, right up to my college application.”


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