CHS honors academic excellence at Awards Banquet

by May 15, 2019COMMUNITY sgadugi

A total of 75 Cherokee High School students received academic awards at a banquet held on the evening of Tuesday, May 14 at the Chief Joyce Dugan Cultural Arts Center. (SCOTT MCKIE B.P./One Feather photos)





The hard work of the top students at Cherokee High School was recognized during the annual Academic Awards Banquet held on the evening of Tuesday, May 14 at the Chief Joyce Dugan Cultural Arts Center. A record number of 75 students were recognized at the event. 

Dr. Debora Foerst, CHS principal, opened the program by thanking the families of the students for playing an active role in their child’s education. 

“To the students, thank you. Thank you for being a Brave and thank you for working so hard to earn this spot here tonight,” she said. “For the seniors, I encourage you to take the same work ethic that got you here tonight into the next chapter of your life, be it a four-year or two-year college, military, or the workforce. To the freshmen, sophomores, and juniors, keep working hard and encourage your classmates to do likewise.”

Raylen Bark, right, a junior at CHS, poses with her mother, Shannon Bark, after receiving her academic award. Raylen is a multi-sport athlete and a former Teen Miss Cherokee.

The following students received a CHS Academic Award: 

Seniors: Jalyn Albert, Kyler Hill, Joaquin Gabriel Leonardo Layno, Jamie Marie Lossiah, Jarron Lossiah, Josiah Lossiah, Lori Meuse, Korrina Perez, Blake Smith, Seth Smith, Jacob Sneed, Emma Stamper. 

Juniors: Raylen Bark, Taylin Bowman, Tierney Bradley, Bryanna Disoso, Chris Hartbarger, Aia Johnson, Jade Ledford, Shalina Little, Lauren Luther, Breanna Mangold, Cameron Hayes Reed, Sterling Santa Maria, Awee Sequoyah, Macy Swayney, Brandon V. Wolfe.

Sophomores: A.J. Allison, Shay Barker, David Bushyhead, Maya Cruz, Jonathan Frady, Kayla Larch, Teja Littlejohn, Dreyton Long, Mattie Maney, Richard Mata, Destiny Mills, Rocky Peebles, Caden Pheasant, Adam Reed, Rosa Reyes, Naomi Smith, Deante Toineeta, Zoey Walkingstick, Felicity Watty, Trent Wolfe.

Freshmen: Jordan Arkansas, Marcus Armachain, Don Bradley, Evan Caley, Kegan Curtice, Lucian Davis, Aria Foerst, Caidyn French, Gabriel Jarvis, Cameron Lane, Tehya Littlejohn, Zachariah Lossiah, Makala McGaha, Jamice Mora, Alayna Morgan, Shaun Parsons, John Queen, Phoebe Rattler, Vivian Ross, Eric Salazar, Dakota Sexton, Caedance A. Smith, Joshua Smith, Abigail Taylor, Donna Thompson, Danasia Toineeta, Praire Toineeta, Jacob Wallace.

“This is our largest group ever, and I think that says a lot about the efforts of our students and the efforts of our staff to get students to be more serious students, apply themselves, and be the best students they can be,” said Debbie Lambert, CHS guidance counselor, who presided over Tuesday’s event. 

Kelsey Jackson, CHS Class of 2011, was the keynote speaker at the event. Currently the EBCI Public Safety administrative assistant, she holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in business management from Montreat College and spoke about her journey through her college years. 

“Like some of you, I have had challenges throughout my academic career. I attended two different institutions before finding my home at Montreat College.” 

Jackson gave the CHS students advice on lessons she learned in college. “The freedom that comes with your first year of college also comes with many temptations and distractions. You may make new friends and place more time in hanging out than on homework. That can end up in late nights which can then affect your performance…please put your academics first.” 

She encouraged the students to develop good work and study habits and stressed the importance of daily attendance, preparation for classes, and time management skills. 

“It does not matter how long it takes you to finish,” Jackson said encouraging the students to stay in school. “What’s important is that you finish. You are so fortunate to have the school that you do and the privileges that come with it. You are chauffeured to all events, big or small, in charter busses. And, the school campus alone is big enough to be a college campus. My challenge to each of you is to not take this for granted. Take care of what you have. Hold your classmates accountable…each of you have a voice, and you matter. Be confident in your words, but respectful in your delivery.”

Rev. Ben Reed opened the program with an invocation and also offered the closing prayer. 

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