Competition is what drives Fairview Middle student Michael Maguire both in the classroom and on the wrestling mat.

The eighth grader is known throughout the school as a relentless competitor with a strong work ethic. It’s for those reasons and more that Michael was chosen as this year’s Academic All-Star.

“Despite having a visual impairment which makes daily activities more challenging, Michael never complains and is always a team player,” said his teachers. “He works extremely hard to do the best he can in all tasks asked of him. Michael is respectful to his peers and teachers, and he is a strong presence on our school wrestling team. We are so thankful that Michael is a Falcon.”

The feeling is mutual for Michael who says he feels fortunate to have attended Fairview Middle since sixth grade.

“I like this school because it feels like home,” said Michael. “My teachers are great. They know my circumstances, and they let me practice self-advocacy for what I need.”

Michael’s favorite subject is science because he likes the hands-on aspect of the labs. He also enjoys technology and says he might like to work for Microsoft when he gets older. But his real passion is wrestling where, as of December 19, Michael had gone undefeated this season.

“I’ve been wrestling since sixth grade,” said Michael. “I got into it because I thought wrestling would be a good after school activity. I like it because it’s fun to win.”

Although winning a wrestling match is great, Michael says it’s hard to compare it to the thrill of being named an Academic All-Star.

“This is really unexpected,” said Michael who was surprised with the award during a school-wide assembly December 19. “I never would have thought I would get this. It’s really amazing.”