Polk County Middle student Neil Rostick received his Nicholas Green Award on March 8 during the closing session of the North Carolina Association for Gifted and Talented conference in Winston-Salem.

Rostick was recognized for his achievement in community service with the award, given annually to just one student in North Carolina.

Rostick serves his community by volunteering his cooking talents to raise money for P3 (Paws, Prayers and Promises) and Thermal Belt Outreach. He also participates in PacJam, an organization that strives to keep the Appalachian music traditions alive.

Demonstrating his generous spirit, Rostick donated his monetary award of $250 to be split between his two charities and his sixth grade English Language Arts teacher, Jeanne Ferran, to purchase novels for her classroom.

As a part of a celebratory luncheon, Rostick heard the keynote speaker, 2018 North Carolina Teacher of the Year Freebird McKinney. McKinney’s talking points and journey mirrored the outreach skills that Rostick is developing.

McKinney requested to have a photo made with Rostick and congratulated him for his achievements.

Neil Rostick poses with 2018 North Carolina Teacher of the Year Freebird McKinney