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November 4, 2016

To the Admissions Committee of Pacific University,

I have known Sydney Sahlfeld since she was in elementary school, and I have had the pleasure
of being her high school counselor for the past 3 years. In addition to being a beautiful, witty and
personable individual, Sydney has levels of determination and grit that I dont always see in a
student. She has demonstrated this both in and out of the classroom over the years through
rigorous, college-preparatory courses as well as competitive volleyball and softball, which she is
die-hard about. Additionally, she has been involved in the community and school activities that
make me often wonder how she balances it all.
However, she not only balances it, but does it with style. Sydney participates in competitive
sports year-round, with rarely a break at all, although she doesnt allow that to detract from her
academics. Sydney is an extremely competitive person so seeing her in action on the court or
field is mesmerizing. She is so focused when in season and yet her commitment to her athletics
goes beyond practice by having private lessons and taking extra weightlifting sessions. This
tenacity has earned her awards such as 2 nd Team All-League and membership of the 6A State
Championship runner-up for softball in 2016. Although he skill-level is already high, she is
constantly aiming higher and eager to improve, making her coachable and an exceptional
In the classroom, Sydney tackles obstacles through problem-solving, advocacy and focus on a
regular basis. As her counselor, I have rarely had to step in for guidance as she demonstrates the
responsibility and management skills to independently resolve situations on any level skills that
will only help her to succeed at the college level. Her enrollment in advanced and AP coursework
proves her willingness to face rigorous content as well has her ability to manage it, given her
3.67 GPA. Additionally, Sydney has suffered from a few health setbacks throughout the past
couple of years but has not let that deter her from her academic goals or success.
Sydney has also worked hard to establish career goals for herself that incorporate her talents
both in athletics and school. Currently, she plans to major in Exercise Science, with the goals of
pursuing Athletic Training or Physical Therapy at the graduate level. To prepare for that, she is
completing our Health Sciences College & Career Pathway program and a current member of
HOSA Future Health Professionals.
Sydneys motivation in and out of school is demonstrated on a daily basis through her self-
discipline and willingness to learn and be coached. I know that these qualities will further help
her to succeed at the college-level, both athletically and academically. She is truly fearless in her
pursuits which has led her to opportunities to grow as a leader, teammate, student and
individual. I am more than confident that these strong qualities will momentously add to the
campus and student body of Pacific University, and for that reason I recommend her
Michelle Buyas
Glencoe High School