Jill Mahler, Andrew Winslow are Jr. First Citizens

Sweet Home High School seniors Jill Mahler and Andrew Winslow were named Sweet Home’s junior first citizens last week.

On Nov. 3, they will be among other seniors vying to be Linn County’s two junior first citizens.

The two were selected based on an application process detailing their community and church activities, grades and resume, followed by an interview with three high school staff members.

Winslow, 17, is the son of Keith and Brenda Winslow. He is involved in activities and youth group at Community Chapel, where he has served as an usher and on mission trips to Mexico and Montana.

He is a four-year member of the varsity soccer team. He has played baseball for three years, playing varsity last year. He also joined cross-country team members in running the Portland to Coast Relay last summer. He is student body president and has been involved in leadership for four years. He carries a 4.0 grade-point average.

He enjoys hunting, fishing, playing piano and hanging out with friends. He also enjoys running.

His favorite class is Cheryl Munts’ chemistry class.

Winslow plans to attend community college or a small Christian college for the basics after he graduates, then transfer to Washington State University to study biochemistry.

He wants to research diseases and develop vaccines and treatments, he said.

“I took anatomy when I was a junior, and I loved it.

“I liked chemistry more,” he said, but it touched off a desire to learn more about how things affect the human body.

Mahler is the daughter of Terry and Greg Mahler.

She ran varsity cross-country for three years, but has been unable to compete in cross-country this fall due to an injury. She also has participated in track for three years and plans to compete next spring.

She is a student body officer and student body secretary. She has served on the City Council’s Youth Advisory Council since she was a freshman.

She also is a spokeswoman for the United Nations Pilgrimage program, traveling to the east coast in June and July to participate.

She carries a 3.86 GPA.

She enjoys running and writing and loves her journalism class, desktop publishing, with teacher Jim Costa.

The class isn’t a class, she said. It’s run like a business, and she is an editor for The Huskian student newspaper. She assists in proofing, writing stories, layout and whatever is needed.

She plans to study journalism after high school, attending Linn-Benton Community College for a year and then the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication.

She enjoys newspapers, but she is open to other areas of journalism, she said. She wants to combine her interest in nature and other cultures with journalism and work for a publication like “National Geographic” or the Discovery Channel.

“I just don’t want to do a desk job,” she said.

Both thought the honor would be good for their plans.

“I was happy, honored,” Winslow said. “I was glad but surprised. A lot of my friends told me I was going to win it, but there were a lot more qualified people who ran this year.”

“I was very surprised,” Mahler said. With so many other qualified candidates, she said she didn’t expect to win, but she thought she should try something different and challenge herself.