Local report

The Rotary Club of Ashland will recognize Ashland High School senior Julia Laurenson as its October Student of the Month in its meeting Thursday.

Julia holds a 4.0 grade point average, and participates in extracurricular activities that include positions with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. She is a member of National Honor Society and serves as a student tutor assisting other students.

Julia has acted in five school plays, including "Flea In Her Ear" and "Radium Girls." She has acted in the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, beginning at age 10 when she was cast in the OSF productions of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" and Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream."

She was selected by OSF Director Christopher Liam Moore to serve as observer/directing intern in the OSF productions of "Twelfth Night" and "Shakespeare in Love." In his letter of recommendation for Julia's admission to the 2017 National High School Institute Theater Arts Division program, Moore described her as "a magnificent and sensitive actor" and wrote that she is "fearless and curious, ... poised beyond her years."

Julia was a founder of Project Up, which pairs high school theater students with special needs students to teach theater games, choreography and community building exercises. She has arranged to bring OSF artists to Ashland High School to share their expertise in dance and theater with special needs students. The president of Project Up, she last summer coordinated 20 volunteers in a two-week summer camp. She is spending some time this school year creating a documentary about the club so that other high school organizations can replicate the success.

Ashland Rotary students of the month are students who have been recognized by the faculty and staff of their schools as being superior in academics, leadership and involvement in school and extracurricular activities.