|Harvard bound Madeleine Woods heads this year’s graduating class as Valedictorian. She will be speaking at the diploma granting ceremony this coming Sunday, May 24, at 2 p.m. in the school’s East Gym. Joining her will be Salutatorian Michael Franta, who is headed to Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York next fall.
Selected on the basis of grade point average, the number one and two seniors have earned not only the academic privilege of their traditional titles, but as well the right to “salute” the class, and to “bid farewell” to the school that has shaped them for the future. It should perhaps be noted that Franta, as was the custom for centuries, does not have to address the gathered in Latin.
Troy Baumgardner, school counselor, notes from his experience in working with seniors in planning their next steps, that 22 of the 24 students have internship, trade school, training programs, college, or university plans in place. “Although we always do well,” Baumgardner says, “this graduating class seems particularly successful in my years here.”
Overall, the class has been awarded a total of $794,700 in scholarships. Although not every student will use every scholarship awarded, for a class of this significant size to do secure scholarships is commendable. One of the graduates, Alysha Benoit, who will be pursuing her studies at the University of Colorado-Denver, has received the largest scholarship given to date by Partner Colorado Foundation, and the first to receive the Siefried scholarship from it.
Colorado schools which Custer County graduates will be attending in the fall include University of Colorado campuses in Denver and Colorado Springs, Colorado State University-Pueblo, Colorado Mountain College, Otero Junior College, Pikes Peak Community College, and Pueblo Community College. Out of state schools include the Harvard and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Tarleton State University in Texas, Oklahoma Baptist University, the University of Alabama-Huntsville, and Pennsylvania’s Harrisburg Area Community College.
Other graduates will be pursuing advanced learning through Penn Foster’s online courses, vet tech schooling, training in computer coding, and an internship here in the Valley at Skip N Scot Ranch.
The graduates, in alphabetical order, are Kody Aldrich, Randy Bailey, Jordan Beach, Alysha Benoit, Brittanee Bohannan, Jaycie Cardenas, Brittany Carter, Savannah Cordova, Kristian Curtis, Joseph Dyar, Michael Franta, Layne Geroux, Mathew Hibbard, Alexandria Leboeuf, Corey Lewenkamp, Erin McCarthy, Denver Mullett, Beauregard Paramenter, Brandi Platchek, Conner Rowley, Kaylan Stoering, Dillon Wommack, and Madeleine Woods.
As not all students are yet aware of the honors, recognitions, and scholarships to be awarded at the graduation ceremony, the Tribune will publish that information next week. Further information regarding the ceremony can be obtained at www.custercountyschools.org or at the front office during school hours at 719-783-2291.