This editorial had to be written because of young people in our community: They have been winning so many honors that the kudos are piling up and need to be distributed.

We published three stories in less than a week about local students who, despite the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, have excelled in their endeavors.

• A team from Russell High School has won the Dave Ziegler Technical Award in the Student Technology Leadership Program, the first time a team in the region received the prestigious award, for its virtual reality education program. Their work includes designing an affordable VR viewing device, curricula and teacher training and support.

• A number of other students from Russell won titles in the STLP program.

• Ashland Middle School's team's project, "Mitigating the Impact," was named a 2021 Terrific Top 20 project. Students used 3D printers to make more than 100 masks and shields and distributed them in the community to discourage the spread of COVID-19 and devised a plan to teach younger children good hygiene habits to counter the virus.

• James D. Adams Middle School in Floyd County won runner-up for its project called "Behind the Mask," which linked masks to an app so the wearer can create designs.

Student artists won honors, too, in the Burley-Coal Regional Art Competition at Morehead State University.

• Students from Russell High School won for paintings, drawings, mixed media, sculpture, graphic design, photography and video, film and animation.

• Students from Ashland Blazer High School had winners in 3D Fiber Arts and Textiles, graphic design, photography and digital art.

Performance artists also showed what they could accomplish.

Russell High School’s Varsity Dance Team won the 2021 National Dance Alliance National Championship for the Small Varsity Pom Division in April.

They also earned third in the nation in Medium Gameday and fourth in the nation in Medium Hip Hop.

Despite the difficulties of attending school virtually and working on projects without benefit of gathering in person, our students proved they can compete with the best and come out on top.

No need to worry about young people today. They’re going to do just fine.

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