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weather300.jpg Submitted by WWAY on Mon, 11/24/2008 - 4:36pm.

A Wilmington student's senior project is garnering national recognition. A special ceremony was held Monday to award him with a certificate of achievement. Thanks to that very ambitious student, Hoggard is now the first high school in the nation to be recognized as storm-ready. Nicholas Younghaus has been intrigued by meteorology since he was six years old. Now in high school, he spends his afternoons interning at the National Weather Service. So the topic for his senior project came naturally; Younghaus made his high school storm-ready. Following National Weather Service guidelines, Younghaus developed a weather emergency plan for Hoggard, and even trained teachers to recognize severe weather warnings and perform tornado drills correctly. His senior project is done. Now, he has bigger plans. “We can get the rest of New Hanover County schools storm-ready, which will be a role-model probably for the rest of the nation to get their act in gear," said Younghaus. Steven Pfaff, Warning Coordination Meteorologist said, "Now that we have a couple prototype schools that have gone through this recognition, I think this sets the ground work for this program to continue to evolve as we head into the future." And Pfaff said this is something everyone needs to take seriously. "We can't let our guard down, and we can't take these situations lightly. They might not occur that often, but when they do occur, they certainly have a significant impact, and we need to be ready for that." Principal David Spencer said he is very proud of Younghaus. He said his efforts will leave quite a footprint at Hoggard High. Hoggard is the first storm-ready high school in the nation. Rachel Freeman Elementary in New Hanover County is the only other school in the country to get that designation. If you are interested in getting your business, school, or organization storm-ready, visit the National Weather Services's Storm Ready page.

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