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BHS juniors honored for leadership, academic excellence and service

BHS juniors honored for leadership, academic excellence and service

Burnsville High School (BHS) has nominated juniors Lauren Bachmeier and Andrew Dickhausen as this year’s ExCEL Award (Excellence in Community, Education and Leadership) recipients. 

Sponsored by the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL), this unique recognition program is designed exclusively for Minnesota high school juniors who are active in school activities, who show leadership qualities, and who work voluntarily in their community.

Every member school of the MSHSL is invited to nominate one girl and one boy for the ExCEL Award. Nominees must meet the following criteria:

  • be a junior in high school,
  • make satisfactory progress toward graduation,
  • participate in a MSHSL fine arts and/or athletic activity,
  • hold a leadership position(s) in their school, and 
  • work voluntarily in their community.
lauren bachmeier

Lauren is an honor roll student, two-sport athlete (swimming & diving and track & field), orchestra and National Honor Society (NHS) member and a dedicated volunteer in her community. When she’s not volunteering for NHS or other events, Lauren is serving the BHS community by volunteering in the school’s Giving Garden. She’s been a part of the Giving Garden for the last three years and has not only learned gardening skills but has realized the importance of sustainability and being able to grow her own food. While she’s made friends with others and learned valuable skills through the Giving Garden, Lauren’s favorite thing about the garden is that she’s helping stock local food shelves with fresh fruits and vegetables. 

“One of the biggest things that sticks out to me about Lauren is her genuine care and compassion toward every thing she undertakes,” said Burnsville High School math teacher and swim coach Kim Harrod. “My primary exposure to this is as her swim coach, where Lauren gives 100% in everything she does. She also has helped model the character traits of respect, responsibility and engagement through her daily actions in the halls and classroom.”

Andrew is an honor roll student, three-sport athlete (football, basketball and baseball) and a dedicated volunteer in his community. As an athlete, it’s important for Andrew to lead by example, and he strives to do this in everything that he pursues. While his favorite volunteer experience is volunteering with the youth football program, he is very committed to serving his neighborhood, church and school. 

andrew dickhausen

“I have seen Andrew go above and beyond to serve Burnsville High School and his peers,” said Ryan King, BHS physical education teacher and football coach. “Andrew is a tremendous leader within our school and has proven time and time again to be a dependable, driven, hardworking and selfless individual who devotes his time to helping classmates, teammates and sometimes even staff.”

Lauren and Andrew will now be considered for the state ExCEL Award. State ExCEL Award recipients will be selected by an independent panel of judges from schools throughout Minnesota, and winners will be announced on Feb. 6. 

Each recipient will be recognized on 45TV during the broadcast of the 2024 winter tournaments. They also will participate in an on-court award ceremony during the Class AA championship game of the girls basketball state tournament in March.

For more information about the ExCEL Award, visit the MSHSL website at