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May 29, 2014

HamCo: Honors night recognizes student achievements-Val & Sal named

Jasper — Honors Night at Hamilton County High School on Thursday,  May 22, drew a large audience of family and friends to recognize the achievements of numerous students from grades 7-12.

After the presentation of Colors by the HCHS AFJROTC, senior Ismelda Alvarez led the invocation, after which Mistress of Ceremonies Rachel Jarvis presented awards and scholarships to the students.

Eleventh grade student Caitlyn Johnson was awarded the 2014 Sunshine State Scholar, a program of the Florida Education Foundation, and Rachel Bunting and Selena Myers were awarded the 2015 Suwannee Valley Electric Cooperative Youth Leaders Award. Honor students were then recognized, followed by a presentation of scholarships to the graduating seniors. More than $35,000 in locally sponsored scholarships were given out to the seniors from over 30 separate donors, including a $400 scholarship from the Maude Havener Jasper News Scholarship Fund, which was presented to senior Ismelda Alvarez.

Jarvis explained that 11 HCHS students qualified for Florida Bright Futures Scholarships. The winners will be announced this summer.

The HCHS boys varsity basketball team was given special recognition for their accomplishments this year as district and regional champs, as well as state runners-up.

“We are very proud of them,” said Principal Kip McLeod.

The announcement of this year's Valedictorian came as no surprise when senior Trey Norris was selected to receive the honor, as well as the Principal's Award for excelling in a number of areas, including academics, athletics and overall superior ethics.

“If you ever wondered what an all-around, all-inclusive person is, the Principal's Award recipient is that person,” said McLeod. “They have strived for higher and greater things and continue to keep that drive as they keep going forward.”

Selected as Salutatorian was senior Tyler Warfel, who has the second highest academic ranking in the school.

McLeod thanked teachers and staff for all their efforts throughout the year. To the parents, he thanked them for their patience as changes were implemented at the school throughout the year.

“When you're rising, you're going to run into some bumps along the road,” McLeod said. “People don't like change because it takes them out of their comfort zone. Sometimes if you don't change, you get the same result year after year after year. We are making some changes and we are rising. This school will be “One Hamilton” and we will rise to excellence if you continue to support us.”

Superintendent Thomas Moffses gave closing remarks and thanked all the teachers, staff, students and scholarship donors. He then presented the top 10 graduating students with large yard signs, which he said has become a tradition at the school.

“I'd like for you to display it and show it off,” said Moffses.

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