BOURNE — Based on her qualities of kindness, compassion, humility and gratitude, Bourne Middle School 8th-Grader Finley O’Doherty has been selected to be her school’s Project 351 Ambassador next year.
Project 351 is a statewide youth-led service program that was founded by Governor Deval Patrick in 2011. Each student ambassador, from one of the 351 communities in Massachusetts, will participate in community service, civic engagement and leadership development initiatives over the course of a year.
As part of her role with Project 351, O’Doherty will join peers throughout the state in a year-long effort to make their communities a better place by collecting donations and resources for various causes, honoring veterans, volunteering and more. Her service as a Project 351 Ambassador will begin on Martin Luther King Day.
“Finley is the epitome of what Project 351 is all about — she is not only a solid student, but she is curious about the world around her,” said Assistant Principal David Lundell. “She works hard to be an active part of the community and reaches out to those around her. She does all of this with a smile on her face eager to make the world a better place.”
To be chosen as her school’s ambassador, O’Doherty was nominated by her 8th grade team peers, and then had to write a narrative about why she should be chosen. Assistant Principal Lundell then worked with present and past BMS teachers and staff to help determine which of the candidates would be best to serve as the school’s representative in the program.
Asked why she wanted to be chosen for the role, O’Doherty said, “I would love to learn more about taking action and leadership in order to better my community. I would love the opportunity to gain experience, work with and learn from other leaders who I aspire to. I want to spread the values of compassion, kindness, humility and gratitude throughout my community.”
Two of the staff members that helped to select O’Doherty as the school’s ambassador were Spanish teacher Emily Hogan and Guidance Counselor Marie Feehan, who chose her based on her curiosity and willingness to help others.
“Finley puts 100% of her effort into everything she tries. She is kind and always finds the good in everyone,” said Hogan. “She is very curious about the world around her and seems passionate about growing up to be someone that can help people. I have no doubt that she will dedicate herself to her role as our Project 351 Ambassador with the same level of enthusiasm that she has shown in her school work and interests outside of school. We are very lucky to have Finley representing Bourne Middle School!”
Feehan said of O’Doherty, “Finley is a great choice to represent our school and town for Project 351. Her selflessness, caring for others and eagerness makes her the perfect fit for this program.”
Since its inception, more than 4,123 eighth-grade ambassadors have served nearly 1 million community members through youth-led service campaigns.
About Project 351:
Founded in 2011, Project 351 fosters unity and strengthens the ethic of service through the engagement and enrichment of an eighth-grade ambassador from every city and town in Massachusetts. Annually, ambassadors — who exemplify the values of kindness, compassion, humility, and gratitude — are selected to engage in a transformative year of youth-led service. Project 351 is funded entirely by the private sector and individuals. Its mission is made possible by the generosity and civic engagement of private sector and civic leaders including the Martin Richard Foundation, John Hancock, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Mabel Louise Riley Foundation, Michael T. Carmen and Pamela Lederer, The HYM Investment Group LLC, The Foundation To Be Named Later, Boston Celtics Shamrock Foundation, and media partner WBZ-TV.