Noelle Thompson, who serves as Miss Austin Peay, was awarded a Congressional Gold Medal on September 26th, 2020. Thompson, who is a senior in Health and Human Performance, completed over 1,800 hours on development goals to receive the honor.

The Congressional Gold Medal Award is the highest recognition that young Americans can receive from Congress.

Tennessee Senator, Bill Powers, also presented Thompson a Tennessee Senate Resolution to commend her for her exemplary community engagement involvement.

Along with Senator Powers, U.S. Representative, Dr. Mark Green, and District 18 County Commissioner, Jason Knight, were also in attendance to congratulate Thompson.

Representative Green emphasized the importance of the Congressional Gold Award stating, “…it helps young people find a balance in life.”

Thompson’s efforts that led to her receiving the Congressional Gold Medal also made greater impacts on the community.

Thompson started a non-profit organization, Break Through 4 a Buddy, at just fourteen years old. The mission of her work on this program is to promote the social inclusion of individuals with disabilities.

Aside from jump-starting a nonprofit organization, Thompson also completed cardio-fitness goals, became a pharmacy technician, excelled in yodeling, and went on an expedition in the U.K.

Thompson’s achievements make it clear as to why she was recognized with a Congressional Gold Medal Award. However, her work serves a greater purpose.

“It wasn’t just for the gold medal… It really is about making myself a better person and bettering the community around me,” Thompson said.

More can be found about Thompson’s work and Break Through 4 a Buddy at the Facebook page titled, “Noelle Thompson Break Through 4 a Buddy.”