December’s Student of Month has compassion for others

Tyler Cook is Student of the Month for December, 2013. / Photo submitted

By CJ Click
Times-News correspondent

   Helping others may include actively volunteering, but it can also involve lifting someone’s spirits through laughter and simply being a friend. Tyler Cook, a sophomore at Western Alamance High School, is that friend. “He can take a dark day, make a joke out of it and make you laugh,” said Beverly Mann, his mom, in a recent phone interview. “He’s very comical. He loves laughter.”
Cook has a mind for volunteering. He volunteers at the Burlington Youth Council, doing things like the Teen-to-Teen videos at Thataways.
   “Teens get together and make video productions that try to get a message across,” Cook explained. A recent video demonstrated to children how to safely cross the street or walk even if there’s no sidewalk.
“He puts 100 percent into it,” said Megan Siernos, Cook’s Burlington Youth Council supervisor. “He’s very involved and dedicated. He wants to help out in any way he can,” she continued.
Cook’s last name is a good indicator to what he enjoys doing in his free time — cooking. After high school, he even plans on going to culinary school. If he’s not cooking, he’s either watching “Master Chef,” reading, or playing video or board games. He’s a talented artist, as well. Thataways Youth Center sponsors the Youth Artist Awards in which winners get to display their work and Cook has been nominated several times.
“He’s a very talented guy,” Siernos said.
Described as “independent and laidback,” by his mom and “very mature for his age,” by Siernos, Cook doesn’t seem to be your typical teenager.
“I like helping the community and having fun with people, especially my brother, Brandon,” Cook said. With his passion for others combined with his artistic abilities, both in the culinary and visual arts, Cook is bound to go places in life.

CJ Click is a sophomore at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Teens & Twenties writer.


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