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Getting to Know …

Michael Hennesy

Michael Hennesy is an Ashburn resident who recently was awarded The Boy Scouts of America National Court of Honor’s Medal of Merit for his prompt action in rescuing a fellow surfer, Logan Brown, caught in a riptide.

Where did you grow up?

I was born in Fairfax and moved to Raleigh, N.C., when I was 5. At age 8, we moved to Dallas, Texas, but after a year moved back to Northern Virginia, here in Loudoun County. We have lived here for the past eight years.

Tell us about your family.

I have a father, Shawn, and mother, Theresa. A brother, Tim and a dog named Sandy

Favorite school subject:

My favorite subject is science. I particularly like biology and earth sciences.

What do you want to do when you get older?

I am going to Florida Tech next year to study oceanography or ocean engineering. After I graduate, I hope to get a master's degree in marine science. Then I hope to get a job with a government organization such as NOAA or perhaps a privately funded research group. I want to have a family and kids.

Awards and achievements:

* Eagle Scout (Boy Scouts)

* Bronze Award (Venture Crew)

* Ranger (Venture Crew)

* I have won several awards with the Technology Student Association, a national organization that holds competitions for high-school students in the area of technology. Examples are CAD (Computer Aided Design), robotics, engineering design, and dragster design. I have won many regional competitions and have listed the trophies I have won at states. I plan to attend the national conference this year in Nashville, Tenn.

* In '05, a first in engineering design;

* In '06, a second in robotics;

* In '07, a first in engineering design and third in tech challenge and a third in transportation modeling.

What are your hobbies?

I love surfing, skateboarding, snowboarding, camping and everything outdoors.

Favorite place to hang out in the community?

I usually hang out at friends' houses, but I can often be found at Starbucks or Potbelly’s enjoying a bite to eat.

What are some ideas you have on ways to improve your community?

The environment is very important to me and I want to work in helping others to enjoy it and protect it as well. I hope to do this by working with organizations that teach school children and the public the importance of protecting the environment. I want to get more kids today involved in Scouts. It is a wonderful program that gets kids involved in the outdoors and citizenship. It teaches to respect and cherish the outdoors and I strongly believed that Scouts has helped me.

What is the last book you read/movie you saw?

I love to see movies with friends. I just saw "Disturbia" last weekend, which was great.

What is your favorite (or least favorite) thing about school?

The best part about school is just being with all my friends.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Haha … well quite possibly still in school working on a master's degree.

Personal goals?

To be successful in my career and enjoy my work. To have a family and kids. To make a difference in the community, teaching others about the ocean and the environment. I want to protect the outdoors and work with the community to protect it. Keep active outdoors and enjoy nature.

What is a Venturing Crew?

It is a co-ed branch of BSA that focuses on high-adventure outdoor activity. We camp, travel and enjoy the outdoors. We teach to protect the environment and Leave No Trace camping. There are no ranks, just awards that can be earned.

How did the Venturing Crew training aid you in helping Logan Brown?

I used the universal SCUBA symbol to ask Logan if he was OK. He then responded with the symbol to say he needs assistance. We learned these symbols on a trip to Sea Base where we dived in the Keys together for a week with our Crew.

How can people become involved with a Venture Crew?

Contact Wayne Nielsen at 703-444-6589.