Max Batanian is a top scholar, athlete and community servant with a long list of achievements. In addition to maintaining an excellent GPA and playing two to three sports throughout high school, he’s also a musician who plays in band and an Eagle Scout who has volunteered numerous hours for various projects.
A Scout since elementary school, Batanian has remained involved because he appreciated the diversity it offers and the many opportunities to meet people.
“Scouting for me was a bigger influence than I knew at the time. It taught me leadership skills and moral values, and I really adopted those and took them to heart,” he says.
A leader by example, he’s been teaching life skills to younger scouts while also being regularly involved with projects for PenMet Parks.
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“Max more than doubled the required (service) hours by working on fellow scouts’ Eagle service projects, trail maintenance during troop outings and building furniture for a local furniture bank,” says Troop 212 Assistant Scoutmaster James Spitzer.
One example was his project for Eagle Scout, the highest rank available. Batanian led 15 other young men as well as adults to build a walking bridge for a trail at McCormick Park in Gig Harbor.
“Not only does the bridge serve many trail hikers, cyclists and horse riders, Max’s ability to lead his group — with minimal adult guidance — has helped Max grow into the serving leader that he is today,” Spitzer says.
Batanian considers that through the Boy Scouts, he learned that service is not about big accomplishments.
“It’s the little things you can do every day to serve someone,” he says. “I strive to serve every day and that’s how I show people I love that I love them.”
Batanian was equally dedicated to athletics. A football player since third grade and wrestler for almost as long, he continued both sports through high school as well as playing lacrosse for one year.
He credits his father for instilling in him an attitude of “not wasting time,” which contributed to his academic success.
“I grew to be an efficient worker and still have fun throughout the day, being with friends and maintaining a balance,” he says.
Batanian plans to study environmental engineering at California Polytechnic State University while joining the ROTC, then become an officer in the U.S. Army. His interest in environmental engineering grew from his love for being outdoors and his understanding for the need to protect the environment “to make sure the world stays beautiful.”
Category: Community service
Education: Senior, Gig Harbor High School
Parents: Tim and Laura Batanian
Activities/Achievements: 6 AP/Honors classes; varsity football; varsity wrestling, league champion, team captain, Coaches’ Award, Peter Haas Award; JV lacrosse; National Honor Society; Arletta Sounds lead drummer; GHHS band percussionist; tutoring; Boy Scouts Eagle Scout, patrol leader; WIAA Outstanding Scholar Athlete; Tacoma Athletic Commission Student of the Year Nominee; Gig Harbor Living Local magazine Athlete of the Month; volunteer work for PenMet Parks, NW Furniture Bank, Mary Bridge Courage Classic, Relay for Life and others
Favorite teacher: Phyllis Payne, math. “She is always kind and enthusiastic. She is accepting when mistakes are made and sincerely wants us to succeed.”
Best thing about high school: “There’s always someone to help, both with school work and otherwise. The students are well-connected and show kindness to each other. Students and staff strive to help each other succeed and feel accepted.”