Belmont scholar of the month reaches for stars

23 January 2007 | 07:32 Code : 12494 Geoscience events
Tim Gurshin has been skiing virtually since he was old enough to stand up. Spending....

Tim Gurshin has been skiing virtually since he was old enough to stand up. Spending time skiing - either on the slopes with skis or a snowboard, or in the woods and fields on cross-country skis - is his favorite activity.Tim Gurshin, a Belmont High freshman, is the Francis Wayland Parker Scholar of the Month for December. (ROGER AMSDEN)But the 14-year-old freshman at BelmontHigh School, selected as Francis Wayland Parker Scholar of the Month for December, sees his future in the stars, not on the slopes."I want to be a scientist. Math and science are my favorite subjects and I'm really interested in astronomy. It's a fascinating subject," said Gurshin, a straight-A student who impresses both his peers and the high school staff with his thirst for knowledge.For Gurshin, the real stars of his life are family members and those people who have touched his own life."They're my role models. I guess I really don't pay much attention to celebrities," he said.That's why he chose to write his essay about Parker, a 19th-century education innovator who was born in Bedford. He stressed group activities, the teaching of science, informal methods of instruction and the elimination of rigid discipline as part of the progressive education movement of the late 19th century."I wrote it to show how appreciative I am for what he had done and used specific examples of my own teachers from different grade levels," Gurshin said.He admits he was pleasantly surprised to find out that someone from New Hampshire had played such an important role in shaping the nation's educational philosophy. Like many Granite Staters, he had never heard of Parker before he became involved in writing the essay.Gurshin lives in Canterbury with his dad, Tim, a lawyer who is also a singer and songwriter, and his mother, Olivia, who has been a school guidance counselor for more than 30 years.He said his dad's music is sort of a mix of folk, rock and country, which may account for his favorite music being classical rock, rather than the genres more in favor with his peers. Tim plays the alto sax and is a member of the high school band, the concert band and jazz band.Gurshin also enjoys playing soccer, baseball and basketball and is a cross-country runner.Other nominees included Nicholas Ambrogi, Manchester Central; Taylor Brown, Londonderry High School; Emily Burke, Moultonborough Academy; Natalie Dostie, Colebrook Academy; Matthew Eaton, Pembroke Academy; Keiley Foster, Manchester Memorial; Aliza Harrigan, Plymouth Regional; Abby Johnson, Manchester West; Kaleigh Richardson, Inter-Lakes High School; Brianna Saunders, Campbell High School; Erik Skarin, Sunapee Middle-High School; Carla Toland, Alvirne High School and Amanda Wilson, Merrimack Valley.The Francis Wayland Parker Scholarship program is sponsored by the New Hampshire Association of School Principals, in cooperation with the New Hampshire Union Leader, Verizon, Lifetouch Studios and the Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Northern New England

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