Teen of the Week: MHS junior works on leadership skills

Marietta High School junior Austin Offenberger is looking ahead to a career in mechanical engineering, but meanwhile he is sharpening his leadership skills, athletic prowess and academic honors.

A member of the National Honor Society and the school’s cross country and varsity swim team, Offenberger also is working toward Eagle Scout status by improving part of the community commons.

Question: How did you become involved in 4-H?

Answer: My mom is an advisor and my sister was in it. I went to some meetings and decided to join. I like the leadership and public speaking skills part of it, those made me feel more comfortable talking to groups of people. I’ve been treasurer and vice president of my club.

Q: Talk about some of your experiences with 4-H.

A: At the Buckeye Regional Council in2017, we spent the weekend near Columbus working with people of all ages on leadership skills, things we could bring back to our own club. I’m going to Washington D.C. this summer for Citizenship Washington Focus, to improve my leadership skills.

Q: You seem to be involved in both academic and athletic pursuits. How do those things work together for you?

A: It makes me work harder at both. I try to work hard at everything.

Q: What are your career plans?

A: I am going to college to major in mechanical engineering. I went to a college career class last year, and it just sounded like a really interesting choice for a career.

Q: Do you have a college picked out yet?

A: No, I just want to attend a college that has a really good mechanical engineering program. I’m taking College Credit Pus from Marietta College right now, but they only have petroleum engineering, and that doesn’t interest me as much.

Q: Your activities seem to have an emphasis on leadership. Why do you think that’s important?

A: Leadership is always a good skill to have because you never know when you might be put in charge of something. As an engineer, for example, it would be nice to know how to lead other people in case you’re put in charge of a project.

Q: What do you like to do in your spare time?

A: I just like to hang with my friends. I’m usually pretty busy.

Q: What’s the best thing that’s happened in your life so far?

A: There’s not really one best thing, just a lot of smaller things. For example, the summer after my freshman year, I went to California for a week-long engineering camp, and then I went to New Mexico and went backpacking for two weeks.

Q: What’s your involvement with Scouting?

A: I’m working on my Eagle Scout project, building a fence on the Broughton property at the parking lot for the entrance to the nature preserve. It will help prevent cars from driving into the creek.

This interview was conducted by Michael Kelly. To nominate a Teen of the Week, email news@mariettatimes.




¯ Age: 16.

¯ Grade: Junior.

¯ School: Marietta High School.

¯ Residence: Marietta.

¯ Family: Scott, 49 and Laura, 50, younger brother Logan, 14, older sister Katy, 23.

¯ Activities: CARTEEN, 4-H, Boy Scouts, National Honor Society, cross country, swimming, College Credit Plus scholar.

¯ Career goal: Mechanical engineering.