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 September 2000 Contest Entry
Role Models

My Role Model: Mrs. Edwina Wetzel

Mrs. Wetzel is the daughter of Leonard and Madalyn John of Conne River. She is an avid gardener, a craft lady, a director, a liturgical reader, and a compassionate person. She is also a survivor of cancer.

Mrs. Wetzel started as a teacher of Native children in Conne River. She worked hard to keep education in the Conne River school. Before then, the people of Conne River had to go to St. Albanís to get their junior high education.  Many people quit school because they found discrimination in the non-Native school in St. Albanís and they were not comfortable staying with strangers.

Many years after this, Mrs. Wetzel finally got the department of education to set up a school at Conne River, that ran from kindergarten to grade nine. Today our school consists of grades kindergarten to grade twelve plus adult classes at night. In 1979 the first graduating grade twelve class had graduated from the Conne River school. This made Mrs. Wetzel very happy.

 I admire Mrs. Wetzel because she has done so much for our community and she made education come alive in Conne River. Everyone has the chance to stay home and get a good quality education thanks to her. Mrs. Wetzel has influenced my life by making a very educated school for our community and she taught many people to be proud of who they are. She inspires Native youth about the importance of trying our best, and keeping our culture strong. She is my role model.

Entry J-23
Candice Benoit
Conne River, NFL
Grade 7

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