Bonny Eagle grad urges, ‘Do something you love’

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Madaline "Maddie" Wakefield, graduating from Bonny Eagle High School and Portland Arts and Techology High School, will study automotive technology at Central Maine Community College this fall.

Madaline “Maddie” Wakefield, graduating from Bonny Eagle High School  and Portland Arts and Techology High School,  will study automotive technology at Central Maine Community College this fall.

Madaline “Maddie” Wakefield stands out at Bonny Eagle High School in SAD 6 and Portland Arts and Technology High School.

Madaline “Maddie” Wakefield of Hollis graduates Portland Arts and Technology  High School in Portland on Friday, May 19, and also graduates Bonny Eagle High School on Friday, June 9. Wakefield studied marine systems at PATHS and was the only girl in her class.

Madaline “Maddie” Wakefield, a Bonny Eagle High School senior who studied marine systems at the Portland Arts and Technical High School, will continue her education at Central Maine Coimmunity College in Auburn this fall.

Maddie Wakefield of Bonny Eagle High School in SAD 6 is the only female student this year in the marine systems course at Portland Arts and Technology High School in Portland.

BUXTON — Madaline “Maddie” Wakefield, praised as a standout senior by educators at Bonny Eagle High School and Portland Arts and Technology High School, is gearing up for a career in the mechanical world.

Wakefield has attended classes in the mornings at Bonny Eagle and afternoon classes at Portland Arts and Technology High School. She also squeezes a job into her busy school schedules and regularly works out in a gym.

She’ll graduate from both high schools. PATHS conducts its graduation exercises at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, May 19, under a tent at the high school. Then, on Friday, June 9, she’ll be awarded a diploma from Bonny Eagle at its commencement, which begins at 6 p.m. at Cross Insurance Center in Portland.

At PATHS, she studied marine systems and small engines for two years. “I’m the only girl in my class here,” she said last week, surrounded by boats and engines in a shop classroom.

After college, she hopes to own her own vehicle repair business. “You drop off your car, I fix it,” she said.

Lori Napolitano, principal at Bonny Eagle, described Wakefield as a “well-deserving student” for recognition. “She loves dirt bikes, motorcycles, really anything with a motor,” Napolitano said.

Wakefield has that “innate knowledge of who she is, what she wants to achieve and how she is going to relish every minute of it when she arrives,” said her guidance counselor at Bonny Eagle, Karen Wade.

“And on top of it all, she always has a smile and laughter is never far behind,”  Wade said.

Wakefield is the daughter of Sarah Drinkwine of Hollis and Steve Perkins of Cape Canaveral, Fla.

This fall, she’ll study applied science at the Central Maine Community College in Auburn. “I’m so excited,” she said.

She was named student of the third quarter at PATHS and has earned several scholarships. “Madaline is a model student,” a posting on the PATHS website says.

Rebecca Davis, student services coordinator at PATHS, last week praised Wakefield as a scholar and for her work ethic. “She’s great, she works hard,” Davis said. “I love her.”

Wakefield has been named to the National Honor Society of High School Scholars and the National Technical Honor Society.

She prepped at Bonny Eagle in anticipation of someday owning a  business. “I took financial awareness,” she said.

“Maddie is a strong student and she really pushed herself to take English comp at Southern Maine Community College to push her academic abilities, as much as career and technical education pushed her kinesthetic abilities,” Wade said.

When not in classrooms and studying, Wakefield has worked at a Waterboro restaurant, Flippin’ Good. Her favorite pizza is topped with French fries, brown gravy and cheese curds.

Somehow, she wedges lawn care for a Buxton couple into her schedule. Handy with tools, she grew up working on lawnmowers, cars, trucks and tractors. “I love it,” she said. “I really do.”

Her hobbies include riding dirt bikes with her family and boyfriend, snowboarding, snowmobiling and skiing at Sugarloaf. She has coached youth for the Hollis Recreation Department and has participated in its fundraising.

“She did not set out to be a role model for other girls to achieve their dreams, no matter how non-traditional.  But as she watched other teenagers slowly start to settle for less or choose not to rock the boat of gender stereotypes, she realized that her younger siblings do look up to her and while other girls are in cars, she is usually the only one under it,” Wade said.

“In true Maddie fashion, she leads by example, living her philosophy that raising the bar for both men and women improves the quality of life for everyone.”

But, graduation will be bittersweet for Wakefield as she leaves her friends and teachers like Don Denico at Bonny Eagle and Michael Del Smith at PATHS, she said.

As others prepare for their futures, Wakefield offers some sound advice. “Go to school for something you want to do,” she said. “Always do something you love because you’ll get up and want to do it everyday.”

Robert Lowell can be reached at 854-2577 or rlowell@keepmecurrent.com