The Mineral Point Kiwanis Club honored its December Students of the Month at a virtual meeting Tuesday, December 7.

The students, who are members of the senior class, are selected for this honor through a voting process by staff at the high school, and their biographies are written by themselves.

Jazmine Cool

Jazmine Cool, daughter of Terry and Andrea Cool, grew up in Highland where she attended elementary and middle school. To continue her education, she transferred to Mineral Point High School where her father teaches history.

Jazmine has been an active member of the school in many areas. She has been a football cheerleader since her sophomore year and has also participated in band, choir, musical theatre, mock trial, math team, and is a captain of the forensics team. Freshman year, Jazmine was named Best All-Around Freshman and received the Gregor Mendel Award for biology. She was elected Vice President of her class sophomore year and was the Spanish III Student of the Year; it was also her first year as drum major of the marching band. She was Biology II Student of the Year in her junior year and was also accepted into the National Honor Society where she currently serves as President.

Music has always been a fundamental aspect of Jazmine’s life. She grew up listening to barbershop quartets as well as performing in barbershop shows with her extended family. She began voice lessons in 4th grade and has continued to develop her vocal skill. Her favorite activity at Mineral Point is the amazing musical theatre program. She was the Minstrel in “Once Upon a Mattress,” Cosette in “Les Miserables,” Madame de la Grande Bouche (the wardrobe) in “Beauty and the Beast,” and most recently, she had the honor of playing Velma Kelly in this year’s production of “Chicago.”

When she is not in school, Jazmine enjoys reading, crocheting, playing piano, and arranging music. She is currently working on a medley of ABBA songs for a senior trio to sing at graduation.

After graduating, Jazmine does not yet know where she will attend college, but she plans to major in vocal performance with a likely double major in biochemistry or linguistics. 

Jazmine would like to thank every individual of the Mineral Point High School staff for their commitment to creating the best environment possible for students; their work is greatly appreciated. She would like to thank Mr. Tom Steger for inspiring her interest in the sciences; biochemistry had never crossed her mind until the gel electrophoresis lab in biology her freshman year when she was instantly fascinated. She would also like to thank Mrs. Kristin Staver for being a consistent supporter of all of her interests since the first time Jazmine sang at a Mineral Point basketball game when she was ten. She thanks Ms. Ashley McHugh and Mr. Matt Nevers for aiding in her musical journey and providing countless opportunities for her to grow. Last, but certainly not least, Jazmine thanks her parents for their continual love and guidance throughout her high school career and her entire life.

Jazmine would also like to thank Kiwanis for this opportunity and congratulate her fellow Student of the Month Blake Radtke, and all of the previous seniors selected, for the hard work they have done to earn this honor. 

“Jazmine Cool is one of those familiar names you hear when you talk about an amazing singer, talented actor, up-beat cheerleader, athlete, and gifted student. She always seems to be wearing a smile and works to the top of her potential. She is not only a joy to have at Mineral Point Schools, but I’m sure she has a very bright future ahead of her in whatever path she chooses. Congratulations on being named Kiwanis Student of the Month. This honor is very well deserved.” ~ Janet Lawinger, High School Administrative Assistant

“Jazmine Cool is a beautiful young lady with many talents. I have had the pleasure of watching Jazmine from afar since she was young. She is not only an excellent speaker, but also a wonderful musician. From the days in Highland’s church, to the many performances in Mineral Point, I have enjoyed watching her mature.  Jazmine, keep pursuing your dreams!  Congratulations on becoming one of December’s Students of the Month!  Best wishes on an amazing future!  Always keep music in your heart!” ~ Jill McGuire, Kindergarten Teacher

“I first met Jazmine her freshman year in my Geometry class, and I have loved getting to know her these past four years as a member of my advisory group, the high school math team, and now as a member of National Honor Society.  In Geometry, Jazmine was new to the school district, but she was instantly a stand out student. She came in with a love and passion for math that was extremely exciting to see. Jazmine is a very confident student, and is an immense asset to classroom discussion.  Jazmine always impresses me with her drive to excel at everything that she does.  From starring in the high school musicals, leading the marching band as the drum major, cheering under the Friday Night Lights, winning math team medals, to serving as the NHS President, Jazmine is a true student leader.  I will miss her next year, but I know that she is destined for great things! Congratulations, Jazmine!” ~ Cindi Nothem, High School Math Teacher

“During the last four years with her as a student, I have watched Jazmine take on a variety of opportunities and challenges in both the choral and musical theatre programs, and elsewhere within the school and community at large. Jazmine always comes to rehearsal and class prepared, and with a strong work ethic and positive attitude. Even when she was learning remotely for nearly her entire Junior year, she still demonstrated self-motivation, organization, self-advocacy, and professionalism. Be it in classes or rehearsals, community or school programs, Jazmine has demonstrated terrific responsibility and self-reliance, all while keeping the ensemble’s goals in mind. Within the MPHS Choral Department, she has earned the esteemed choral awards of Musicianship and Leadership, and has served as a National Anthem performer for an array of professional, state, and local athletic events, and local military ceremonies.

I have had the pleasure of witnessing Jazmine’s growth in the musical theatre productions. Within this extra-curricular program, she earned multiple awards for her performances as the Minstrel in “Once Upon a Mattress,” Cosette in “Les Misérables,” Madame de la Grande Bouche in “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast,” and Velma in “Chicago.” Throughout each production, she has proven her strong ability to balance multiple interests and obligations, and her immaculate skills in such varied characters, challenges, and styles. Her drive, artistic abilities, and dedication have been major contributing factors to the program’s development.

Jazmine is always professional when representing the Mineral Point High School Vocal Program. She has been nominated and selected for numerous festivals such as: 2018 UW-Platteville Honors Choir, 2018 SWAL Honors Choir Festival, 2020 and 2022 Vocal Arts Festival, 2021 and 2022 WCDA All-State Choir Festival, 2019, 2020, and 2021 WI State Honors Project, and 2022 Dorian Festival. Jazmine has competed and earned first place in State and District Solo & Ensemble Competitions every year within multiple genre categories. She has also participated in the 2019 Schmidt Vocal Arts Workshop & Masterclass, 2019 UW-Madison Summer Music Camp, 2021 Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, and in community musical theatre productions. I will never cease to be amazed at her drive for self-growth, willingness to try new experiences, and ability to flourish in any situation.

Jazmine’s influence on our music department, school culture, and local programs has already been immense, genuine, and deep.  I am sure she will continue to positively affect all communities in which she performs, partakes, and prospers. It has been a joy working with such a talented, mature, intelligent, and determined young person!” ~ Ashley McHugh, Middle/High School Choir Teacher

Congratulations on your selection as the Student of the Month for December.  Jazmine is such a wonderful example for underclassmen to look up to as she is kind, hard working, and always has a smile on her face.  Your determination and confident approach will serve you well and help you reach your future goals.  Thank you for all that you have done for Pointer Nation.  Best of luck with your future.” ~ Matt Austin, High School Principal

“I was first introduced to Jazmine at a basketball game when she was just ten years old. I can honestly say I was speechless – which anyone knows that never happens to me! This small child belted out the National Anthem like an adult professional. The entire gym was speechless! Then as a freshman, she continued to amaze me in the classroom by being one of the most exemplary English students I have worked with within my career. In addition, I have had the privilege of working with her in forensics, Blue Crew, and cheerleading – all of which she continues to shine. I am beyond excited to see where life takes this brilliantly talented young lady and feel honored that I can say, ‘I knew her when.’ ~ Kristin Staver, High School English Teacher

Blake Radtke

Blake Radtke would first like to thank the Kiwanis organization and the school staff for giving him this honor. Additionally, he would like to congratulate Jazmine Cool on also receiving this Student of the Month honor.

Blake is the son of Chris and Keri Radtke, as well as brother of Brady Radtke. He has a helpful family that has shaped him into the person that he is today. The Mineral Point community has been a great place for Blake to grow up in. Everyone is very supportive and helps each other out.

Mineral Point offers students many opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities. Some of the activities Blake participates in are FFA and National Honor Society.

When not in school, Blake loves to be on the farm and to help with farm work. Blake helps his grandmother on her family-run farm all-year-round tending to the cattle and helping with the crops. During the summer, Blake also works at an apple orchard taking care of the trees and processing cider. In his free time, Blake loves to farm and spend time with his family and friends.

Farming has always been an outlet for Blake. Working on the farm has taught him the importance and reward of hard work. After school, Blake plans on continuing his education at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. He plans to major in Agribusiness and minor in Agricultural and Industrial Engineering Technology.

Once again, Blake would like to congratulate Jazmine on this student of the month honor. Blake would also like to thank everyone he has met along his journey who has shaped him into who he is today. He would like to express a special thank you to Mrs. Lisa Hay and the Kiwanis, Mr. Mike Robinson, Mrs. Kris McCoy, his parents Chris and Keri Radtke, Brady Radtke, and his classmates for everything that they have helped him with. 

“I’ve known Blake since elementary school and remember him as an inquisitive boy who wanted to do his best at whatever he put his mind to. His adorable dimples may get him the first glance, but getting to know the incredible young man he’s become is an honor. He works to his full potential and puts forth an amazing amount of maturity, especially how he shows kindness to all who know him. There couldn’t be a more worthy recipient of Kiwanis Student of the Month. I wish you much success in the remaining months of high school, as well as in your future.” ~ Janet Lawinger, High School Administrative Assistant

“It has been a pleasure watching you grow as a student and a person throughout your education. As your advisory teacher I have been able to see your work ethic and positive attitude on a weekly basis. You have made my job easy — over the last four years you have never had a missing assignment or late work! Nor do you complain about anything. My biggest challenge is saying something witty enough to make you crack a grin! It is admirable how you just get the work done and excel at it. Keep being a model for quiet leadership; it is a style that is much needed in the world. I wish you the best as you finish out your high school career and know great things in wide open spaces will be in your future.” ~ Kris McCoy, Middle/High School Librarian

“From the time I met Blake Radtke as an elementary student, to the poised senior in high school he is today, he has always been a great role model for others.  He is one of the kindest, most thoughtful, genuine students to walk the halls of the Mineral Point Schools. He has a wonderful sense of humor.  He may not realize it, but he has had a positive impact on many people, including myself. He is an amazing young man who will accomplish great things.” ~ Deb Molle, 3rd Grade Teacher

“Blake Radtke remains quiet and shy, just as he was in elementary school.  He always worked hard and continues this today.  I recall a sparkle when he would talk about farming and animals. Blake, it’s been fun watching you grow into a successful student. Congratulations on being one of December’s Students of the Month! Have a great Senior year and good luck in the future!” ~ Jill McGuire, Kindergarten Teacher

“I truly enjoyed having Blake in Spanish class!  He is a smart and hardworking young man.  One of my favorite memories of Blake was when he made his “How to…” video for class.  He demonstrated how to drive a tractor with Spanish narration; it was awesome! I wish you all the success in the world, Blake.  No matter what you choose to do, I know you’ll be great! The world is a better place with you in it!” ~ Jenny Wahlin, High School Spanish Teacher

Blake, you have a natural talent as a leader and your ability to work diligently, be reliable, be respectful, and your overall positive attitude are going to help you be successful in any path that you choose to pursue.  Thank you for your commitment to making Mineral Point a better place and for being a positive role model for your peers and underclassmen. Congratulations on your selection as the Student of the Month for December.” ~ Matt Austin, High School Principal

“As Shakespeare said, ‘Men of few words are the best men.’ This quote is perfect for Mr. Blake Radtke. He may not say a lot, but it is accurate and thoughtful and sincere when he does. He has been a complete joy to work with, both in and out of the classroom. He is the first to volunteer and the last to leave a job unfinished. Because of this, I know his future is very bright. I am honored to have been part of his high school experience and can’t wait to see what is yet to come for this kind of soul.” ~ Kristin Staver, High School English Teacher

(Cool photo by Bekah Peplinski; Radtke photo by Lifka Bennett)