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'Friends of Rachel' welcome new foreign exchange students to WDC

Wadena-Deer Creek's "Friends of Rachel" welcomed new foreign exchange students, as well as new high school students at a luncheon recently.

Two foreign exchange students are from South Korea: So Hyun Choi, who goes by Donna, is staying with the Riddle family, and So Hyun Kim, who goes by Anice, is living with the Strandberg family. Franzisca "Franzi" Hemmerle comes to Wadena from Germany and is staying with the Self family. All three students will be attending classes at WDC for one semester.

WDC also welcomed several new students who enrolled in the high school at the start of the Jan. 24 semester. They included: Shawn Magnuson, seventh grade; Daniel Melton, Maizie Miller and Brendon Norris, all eighth grade; Vanessa Schaefer, ninth grade; and Miranda Miller, 10th grade.

New students were welcomed by high school principal Tyler Church, high school counselor Toni Kraska, and high school students who are members of the Friends of Rachel Club (FOR). FOR was formed after the Rachel's Challenge anti-bullying program was presented the fall 2011 school year at WDC. Rachel's Challenge was started by the family of Rachel Scott, who the first victim of the 1999 Columbine shooting in Littleton, Colo., and who was known for her acts of kindness.

Rachel's Challenge trained more than 40 WDC students and staff on ways to incorporate kindness. These students and staff are called "Friends of Rachel" and will carry on the program throughout WDC School District.