LFCC has been graced with many extremely intelligent and dedicated students over the decades. But few have reached the heights of the Middletown Campus’s 2018 Outstanding Graduate Samuel Snarr. He is described by Calculus Professor Cyril Petras as “quite possibly the finest student I have ever taught.”
Last year he challenged himself by taking two very high-level calculus classes and two physics classes that are described as being university-level.
“Throughout the year, Sam’s professors would joke to each other, ‘Has Sam missed a point in your class yet?’” according to Dean of Students Amber Foltz. “Amazingly, Sam completed 18 credits of extremely rigorous coursework, missing just one point across all four classes.”
But, Snarr wasn’t just a stellar student. He stood out as a campus leader. Though he was a paid tutor for a time in the LFCC Tutoring Center, Snarr also voluntarily tutored countless students in physics, chemistry, calculus and computer science. He was also known to be a mentor to his colleagues in class.
“He was always the student who volunteered to help his peers, but did so expecting no acknowledgment or accolades, but, because that is who he is,” Foltz says. “And, according to his tutoring supervisor, students adored Sam.”
A graduate of Central High School, Snarr was a member of the LFCC Cyber Advocates/Computer Science Club and the Chess Club. He also was the recipient of a Jeffery L. Ross Memorial Endowed Scholarship of $2,000 from the LFCC Educational Foundation. In a thank-you letter for the scholarship, Snarr, who is a first-generation college student, said the award meant he wouldn’t have to give up a semester of school so he could work to afford tuition, as he had been planning to do.
That didn’t mean Snarr wasn’t working outside of the classroom, though. He worked as a custodian for a local State Farm office, for Woodstock Public Works and also mowed numerous lawns as a side job. Additionally, he was volunteering as an EMT with Woodstock Rescue Squad. In January, Snarr started working as a city letter carrier for the U.S. Postal Service.
Much of his free time is spent with his grandparents, Snarr writes in the thank you letter for his scholarship. In it, he speaks of his passion for learning.
“I enjoy reading and taking classes in order to increase the knowledge I have,” he writes. “The subjects that interest me are math and computer science. I also love researching sustainable technologies, such as solar energy, and how it will eventually find itself on the market.”
He’s interested in a future working with a sustainable energy company, such as Tesla.
“I want to contribute to our society’s future in a big way,” Snarr writes.
He will continue on that path by transferring to James Madison University this fall. There, he plans to major in statistics and computer science.
Snarr is appreciative of the quality of education he received at Lord Fairfax.
“I’m very happy with my time at LFCC,” he says. “I’d like to give special thanks to Professor Petras, Physics Professor Ray Rogers, Math Professor Frank Borleske, and Chemistry Professor Ernie Grisdale for taking a personal interest in me and giving me opportunities that I would not have otherwise gotten. I am very lucky to have crossed paths with these wonderful teachers in their disciplines.”