The Minnesota State High School League has announced its “Triple A Award” winners from Osseo High School. The award recognizes high school seniors who excel in Academics, Arts and Athletics. To be eligible, students must have a 3.0 or better GPA and be involved in MSHSL-sponsored activities. 

Triple A Award recipients are selected through a multi-level process involving member schools of the League, the league’s administrative regions, and a special committee of educators, business leaders, and members from the fine arts and athletic communities.

Schools throughout the state have a female and male student Triple A winner. The top two finishers from each region will be invited to a recognition banquet in March and MSHSL officials will announce the four statewide Triple ‘A’ Award winners at that time.

All 32 finalists will also participate in an on-court ceremony during the Class AA championship game of the Boys Basketball State Tournament. The statewide award winners—a girl and a boy from Class A and Class AA schools—will also receive a four-year $1,000 scholarship.

This year’s recipients from Osseo High School are Cole Harcey and Maggie McGuire. The Press did a “Q & A” with both to find out what makes them tick.

Cole Harcey, Osseo

Activities:

Concert Band, Marching Band, Cross Country, Track and Field, Nordic Skiing, PSEO.

Future plans (college, major, goals): University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (most likely); major in some type of engineering while possibly doing ROTC. One of my goals is to become a better leader, possibly through ROTC or some other avenue, so in the future I can have a job where a can help lead a project or some other work.

What are your favorite high school memories?

I really enjoyed hanging out with all my teammates, classmates, and coaches throughout high school. Whether it was before, during, or after school, events, or practices. The time spent getting to know people you aren’t familiar with and laughing it off with your buddies is something I would never trade for anything. Making jokes before stress-filled marching band shows or cross-country races; maybe giving a nice speech to get everyone ready to go. Forming relationships was a high point in my high school experience above all else.

Describe how COVID-19 affected has changed your life:

It has caused me to be a planner, adapter, and more independent in many ways. One must be ready to change their schedule or give up a certain aspect of their life to get in some of the schoolwork or activities that go on throughout the year. It made me appreciate all the prior opportunities high school has given me, like the ones I mentioned previously. It made me appreciate life itself more, as you never know when something could end dramatically, so it has made me more willing to try new experiences and take opportunities when presented.

How did you handle the COVID-19 news last spring as a student and athlete?

It was tough for me, as we were one week into our track and field season, which I had trained strenuously for over the winter months. I was sad about missing all the interactions with my teachers and professors, and with my classmates and teammates as well. I also felt very annoyed as regards to my classes, as I thought I was doing well not only grade wise, but the fact that I enjoyed my classes, which of course that fact wasn’t fully true after the spring news. I did, however, always keep hope that we could be back in class at some point and that sports would resume. I kept training for track and playing a lot for band, hoping we could have a track meet at some point and a band concert in May. It didn’t quite pan out that way, but I think that hope helped keep me trying my best at everything I did.

What are you most proud of in your high school years?

I think I am most proud of never giving up on anything I chose to do during high school. There were a lot of times during all three of my sports, school, and marching band where I told myself that this activity was awful. However, I stayed with it, and it turned out to be all right in the end, as I came to love the grind that came with schoolwork, sports, and band.

What would your advice be to middle school and/or elementary school students on things they can do to succeed and help?

I’m sure this is heard a lot, but don’t be afraid to try new things. Especially if you haven’t found a sport or activity you like, high school is a great place to find out about yourself in all kinds of ways. I never thought I would do any of the things I do now even in ninth grade, so don’t count out anything in middle school or even freshman year. Also, don’t take the experiences you get everyday for granted. High school seems like a long time, but it goes by fast, so try and make the best you can out of the four years you get. Lastly, I would say connecting with others and getting help if you need it, is something you should do. I’ve always been reluctant to ask for help, as some things I just want to complete on my own without any help. However, there will be times where you’ll want help, so don’t be afraid to reach out to anyone.

Favorite movie: X-Men: Days of Future Past

Most embarrassing moment?

There are a lot to choose from, but I would say falling over three times and getting stepped on by a spike during a cross country race is up there. The weather was awful, and I was covered in mud and drenched from the rain. This, however, is one of my most memorable experiences that I like to go back and think about, as I think it epitomizes the hardships of not only cross country, but in high school at times.

Favorite TV/Streaming show:

Supernatural

Who are the top 3 artists on your Playlists? Eminem, Michael Jackson, Childish Gambino

What is your food guilty pleasure?

I LOVE popcorn. I could eat it every day.

Maggie McGuire, Osseo

Activities you’re involved in (academics, sports, arts, etc.):

At school, I am involved in the Osseo Dance Team, the Osseo Theater Department, National Honor Society, and FOCUS Leaders.

Future plans: After graduation, I plan to attend a four-year college in the fall, but I have not yet decided what school. I want to study Psychology and possibly minor in Anthropology. During college, I hope to study abroad, participate in theater, and stay involved in my community by volunteering and helping others.

What is your favorite high school memories? ​

My favorite high school memories are participating in the fall musicals every year. I love performing and growing closer to my castmates throughout the rehearsal and production process. I’ve also loved competing with the dance team. I love practicing as well as performing, and I will always cherish the strong bonds I’ve formed with my fellow teammates.

Describe how COVID-19 affected your life:

​COVID-19 has impacted my life greatly, largely in terms of my academics and the activities I’m involved in. We were unable to produce a fall musical this year, and the dance team season has been cut short because the season started late. However, I’m grateful to have a dance team season, and in the fall, I was grateful to have been able to perform in a play at my school. Although doing school fully online is much different than anything I’ve done in the past, it has taught me to be independent and diligent about doing my work.

How did you handle the COVID-19 news last spring as a student and athlete?

Can you describe some of your reactions? ​When COVID-19 hit, I was rehearsing for the spring play at school. When classes went online, we were lucky to have been able to continue rehearsing the play virtually. Although we were never able to perform the play in full, I still enjoyed rehearsing, and I was able to continue to strengthen my skills as an actor. Throughout the last four months of the school year, from March to June, I was just very confused, as I believe everyone was, but I was able to adjust to having classes online in order to finish out my junior year.

What are you most proud of in your high school years?

​During my high school years, I am most proud of my dedication to my academics and my achievements in the activities I’m involved in. Last year, I was honored to play the female lead in the fall musical, and last winter, I was elected to be one the captains of the dance team.

What would your advice be to middle school and/or elementary school students on things they can do to succeed and help?

I would say my best advice is to stay organized. I’ve made it a routine to write all of my tasks and assignments in a planner so I can keep all of my work straight, and so I can make sure I don’t miss anything.

Favorite movie:

My all-time favorite movie is “The Truman Show.”

Most embarrassing moment?

I guess I don’t get embarrassed too often, but once I spilled half of a mop bucket full of water all over the floor at work. No one saw me, but I was still embarrassed.

Favorite TV/Streaming show:

My favorite shows are The Office and Full House.

Who are the top 3 artists on your Playlist?

I like to listen to a lot of different artists, but my top three are Rex Orange County, Finneas, and Ruth B.

What is your food guilty pleasure?

I love to make and eat chocolate chip cookies.

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