Senior leader inches closer to Heisman

BY MICHAEL CALLOW

Wadsworth’s Joe Pavlak has been nominated for the Wendy’s High School Heisman Scholarship. This is a scholarship award that goes to the most deserving student athletes in across the country. Each state nominates two boys and two girls to be in competition for this award.

Pavlak was the first one of two Ohio nominees, receiving a $1,000 scholarship from Wendy’s, and is now one of five high school boys across the country who has landed an all expenses paid trip to New York City for the award ceremony.

Along with the $1,000 scholarship, Pavlak will also receive a $50 Wendy’s gift card. When asked what he will spend his $50 on, Pavlak said, “50 junior bacon cheeseburgers. The day I walk out of Wendy’s with 50 cheeseburgers at once will be the day I realized that I have made it in the world.”

Now that Pavlak is one of five finalists and will be in New York the weekend of the Heisman Trophy presentation, he has the chance to be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship.

“I guess it is awesome to be able to see that it is all worth while and that the effort I put in can really pay off in more ways than I thought possible,” said Pavlak.
The Wendy’s film crew paid Pavlak a visit to conduct an in- depth interview with himself and his parents.

“The experience was quite unlike anything I have experienced before,” said Pavlak, “It was crazy because the whole camera crew was at my house for about 12 hours. I actually got to know the crew pretty well and it ended up being a lot of fun! It was inspiring to continually hear those I love the most constantly give the glory to God whenever the opportunity to do so presented itself.” Pavlak continues to credit all his success to God, his family, and his friends.

Head Swim Coach Allison Pallija expects much of the same out of Pavlak this year. “I expect Joe to not only continue to be a team leader, but to perform to the best of his abilities no matter the media attention he warrants.”

“I have known the Pavlaks for quite some time, and it is no surprise to me that Joe has been nominated for an award such as this. The core values that his parents have raised him with have translated to every aspect of his life including swimming, academics, and being an overall good citizen,” said Pallija.

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The Wendy’s Heisman trophy is awarded to an outstanding high school athlete each  year. Photo courtesy of MCT Campus.

Heading into his final swim season as a Grizzly, Pavlak is beginning to look at what his future holds. As of now, Pavlak holds a swimming scholarship to the University of Cincinnati, but is waiting to see what this swim season has in store for his college swimming aspirations.

“I would like to attend the University of Cincinnati if the opportunity presents itself, and plan on going into their PreMed program.”

With a bright future and multiple scholarships, Pavlak is excited to see what is in store for him.

Pavlak will be in New York December 10, for the presentation of the award. He hopes to bring the first Heisman award back to Wadsworth to put in the trophy case.

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Joe Pavlak sits down for an interview with a Wendy’s representative to discuss his nomination for the award and what it means to him. Photo courtesy of Joe Pavlak.

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