NJHS Exemplars

Character Exemplar Responses

Describe at least one specific example of when you have demonstrated that you are a student of outstanding character. Write your response in complete sentences.

Sample 1:

In 6th grade, I was riding the bus home one day and noticed that my friend Phil was already seated. Another boy, Dan, sat down with Phil. Dan was poking, annoying, and bullying Phil. This was not the first time he had done this. I could tell that Phil didn’t like it. When I got home, I discussed the situation with my mom. I decided to speak up and talk to Phil. I asked him if he liked Dan’s teasing. Phil’s answer was no.  I confronted Dan, asking him why he teased Phil. He had no answer. I told him not only was it annoying to Phil, but it was also annoying to others on the bus. Then I told him that it wasn’t the right thing to do, and nobody likes it. Others saw what I had done and wanted to get involved. One friend, Luke, volunteered to sit with Phil so there wouldn’t be room for Dan to tease him. I wasn’t going to allow the bullying to go on. I chose to do what I felt was right. It made me feel good to know that I did the right thing, and because of that, others followed.

Sample 2:

One example of when I demonstrated outstanding character is when I was staying after with my teacher and once the announcements said we were dismissed, everyone left. I stayed and helped my teacher put up the chairs. Even though I was going to be a little late for practice because of it, I thought it was more important to help my teacher. Another example of when I demonstrated outstanding character was when I had gotten an answer wrong on a math packet last year and she marked it correct. I told her about her mistake and she was really happy that I was honest and told her. I ended up getting to keep the extra point because of my honesty.

Sample 3:

I show I have good character in different ways. The first example I will share is when I always cheer for runners on opposing teams during cross country meets. I feel like it is important to show respect and encouragement for everyone,  even towards your competitors. Everyone is always working so hard, and hoping for the best, so everyone deserves your respect. Another reason I have good character is because I am a determined person, and I persevere at things. My aunt has Cystic Fibrosis. I have been persevering in raising money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation to make her life, and the lives of other CF patients better. I ran seven miles to raise money for that cause, and I also did a voluntary presentation in front of the entire class on this disease.

Sample 4:

One example of when I have demonstrated outstanding character is when I took responsibility for my coach’s actions and apologized for his behavior. My coach had made an inappropriate comment after the umpire had made a call that he didn’t agree with, and with it being a recreational game, I saw it as unsportsmanlike. I made a point after the game to apologize for the comment my coach had made. I didn’t want the umpire to think that my coach’s behavior was a reflection of the team.


Service Exemplar Responses

What has been your favorite community service activity and why? Please respond in complete sentences.

Sample 1:

My favorite community service activity was peer mentors. Although I enjoyed working in the community garden, I enjoyed the smiles on the faces of the kids I mentor. When I peer mentor, I feel as if I’m not just teaching the kids, but also connecting with them. The main reason why peer mentors was my favorite community service activity was because it felt good to know I was making a difference in the minds of the younger students. Just knowing that the kid I’ve been helping every week scored a 97% on their unit test is reward enough.

Sample 2:

My favorite community service activity is working at the animal shelter. I truly enjoy this activity because I find animals so fascinating. I like to know that I can contribute in making their lives better.  I get my hands and knees dirty, and I’ve found myself enjoying that type of thing. It especially feels good improving the lives of living things that have feelings, just like humans do . Though we all cannot understand exactly what an animal needs at times, I realize that everyone wants to live a good life, and when I’m there, I know I’m making their lives a bit better. The animals that I help to care for include owls, a possum, a porcupine, and a couple of ravens. There are more, but I cannot list them all! You usually do not see those kinds of animals every day, which makes the experience even more special than it already is.

Sample 3:

My favorite community service activity was volunteering to help throw a birthday party at a homeless shelter for children who otherwise wouldn’t be able to have one. The parties are run through a non-profit organization that collects donated birthday party supplies for all ages. At the shelter once a month there is a party to celebrate all of the children’s birthdays within that month. The organization also collects donated birthday presents so on a child’s birthday they have gifts to open. At a party, there can be a large age difference between the birthday kids so the volunteers that run the party have to come up with activities and pick out decorations that all the kids will enjoy. Before the birthday party, we get together and plan out the games and activities. On the day of the party, we go to the shelter before the party starts to set up. My favorite part of the parties is seeing how happy the kids are and knowing that I made a difference in their lives and made sure that they had a great birthday!

Sample 4:

My favorite community service activity has been the art camp that I co-taught at during the summer. I liked this service activity because I got to help out a lot! I also got to work with young kids, which I absolutely love! During the week, I also learned a little bit about myself. My favorite part of it all was the good feeling of just helping out with no reward.


Leadership Exemplar Responses

In addition to any official position you may hold, in what ways do you show yourself as a positive leader in the school or community? Please note that leadership can also be demonstrated through the inspiration of others, a history of reliability and/or dependability in the classroom or community as well as many other ways that may not necessarily be an elected or appointed position. Share more than one specific example, using complete sentences.

Sample 1:

I think I show myself as a positive leader in school during clarinet lessons. When one of my peers doesn’t know how to play a note or a section of music, I show them how. Also, I think I show myself as a positive leader on the volleyball court. I give my teammates advice on how to improve and constantly cheer on the team during tournaments.

Sample 2:

When the girls in my community were interested in having a recreational sports event, no one wanted to take on the responsibility of organizing it, so I decided to take the role of talking to the appropriate people and taking the right steps to successfully organize the event. Whenever I am assigned group projects at school, I make sure that everyone is on task and focused on the task at hand. On my tennis team, I encourage the weaker players to work hard and to not give up by supporting them even when they lose,  so that they can gain confidence and so that the team remains united.

Sample 3:

When I help to coach the kids in the cross country program in Guilderland, I certainly have to exhibit the qualities of a leader. I must help the head coach organize the kids and take action in making sure all the kids cooperate and are behaving with respect. On top of making sure the kids are being good, I need to set a good example as well for the kids to follow. I encourage the kids, and if they are having a hard time with the activity I do not give up on them. Secondly, I show leadership in everyday life at school. One example of this is when someone was sitting alone with nobody to talk to at MASK, I invited them over to sit with my friends and I and made them feel included.

Sample 4:

Although I have not held an official leadership position in school, I show myself as a positive leader in the school or community by volunteering to co-teach my sister’s 2nd grade religion class. Every Monday after school, I go and volunteer at Christ the King and teach an hour long religion class to second graders. I love working with the younger kids and helping them learn how to be better people and how to make good decisions.

I feel that I am a leader at school by setting a good example. I feel that I set a good example by doing all of my work the best I can, being respectful to my classmates and teachers, staying after when I need extra help or to make up work and not being afraid to raise my hand and ask a question when I have one. I believe that if I set a good example that my peers will be influenced by me and want to make good choices too. The more people that set a good example, the better our school is.

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