National Merit honorees: Six Jefferson County seniors are among 16,000 seniors named National Merit Semi-finalists in the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship program.
These academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 8,000 National Merit Scholarships worth about $35 million that will be offered next spring.
Those achieving semi-finalist status from the county:
Jefferson High’s Malika Briggs is the daughter of Bonnie Sitman and Donald Briggs. She plans to attend Middlebury College in Middlebury, Conn. She wants to become a teacher.
She is captain of her school’s cross country team and a member of the track team. She also is part of the Spanish National Society, the National Honor Society, Key Club and the Academic Team.
Bradley Myers, the son of David and Dawn Myers, is undecided about college, but said he is considering West Virginia Wesleyan College.
He plans a career in music education. At Jefferson High, he is a member of both the award-winning marching band and jazz band.
He is vice president of the National Honor Society.
Adri Persad is the son of Cynthia and Selwyn Persad. He plans to attend West Virginia University and major in mechanical engineering. At Jefferson High, he is a member of the school’s Academic Team.
James Park, a senior at Jefferson High, is also a National Merit Semi-finalist.
Timothy Scott, son of Stephen and Karen Scott, plans to attend Massachusetts Institute of Technology and become a Robotics Engineer.
At Washington High, he is a member of the Key Club, the Jazz and Marching Bands, and the National Honor Society. Much of his time outside of school is spent working as a volunteer for the Animal Welfare Society.
Boston University is among the colleges being considered by Tyler Steffey, the son of Christopher and Angela Steffey. He plans to study aerospace engineering.
The nationwide pool of semi-finalists represents less than one percent of high school seniors in the nation.
Musical accomplishment: Caroline Hayden, a member of the FFA chapter at Jefferson High and an accomplished trumpet player, was on stage and in the spotlight during the recent National FFA Convention & Expo in Louisville, Ky.
At the gathering Oct. 30 to Nov. 2, Caroline performed several times along with about 80 other young musicians selected for the honor. The band’s performances were featured on RFD-TV.
Caroline, a sophomore, is the daughter of Joseph and Bonnie Hayden. A musician since elementary school, she’s part of the Cougar marching band and also has played in the school’s jazz and symphonic bands.
College choir: Samantha Yates, a freshman at McDaniel College in Westminster, Md., will perform this weekend as part of the annual College Choir Concert.
The performance, which is free and open to the public, takes place at 7 p.m. Sunday in Baker Memorial Chapel. The college’s 57th-annual tree lighting ceremony follows the concert.
In addition to music from all over the world, the concert features several familiar carols during which audience participation is encouraged.
Math workshop: Sixteen teachers from across Jefferson County recently attended a RESA 8 math workshop, “Digging Deeper into Conceptual Understanding.”
Rather than having students memorize basic math facts, the Next Generation Content Standards and Objectives shifts the focus to understanding how numbers are combined together.
The workshop was part of a year-long professional development plan to support Common Core State Standards.
Those taking part from the county:
April Burkhammer and Kaitlan Ballantine from Driswood Elementary; Maria Dunbar, Deborah Arnwine and Amanda Rinard from Blue Ridge Elementary; Shelia Young and Kathy Blue from T.A. Lowery Elementary; Chervon Grantham of South Jefferson Elementary; Clare Hebb from Wright Denny Intermediate; Cynthia Kishbaugh and Matthew Robins from Shepherdstown Elementary; Rachel Kubic from Ranson Elementary; Sandra Willingham from Page-Jackson Elementary; Kathy Millner from North Jefferson Elementary; and Tara Mahoney from the county central office.
Said Burkhammer, a third grade teacher: “This training has helped me realize that often teachers rob students of their learning experience by stepping in and providing help. We need to let children have time to process and can provide ‘help’ when we discuss together. Interrupting to focus students on what they are doing wrong stops their thinking.”
Cutline: Washington High students Hagan Wilt, Miranda Ashbaugh and Tyler Mattei won Nooks and other prizes at a Homeland/Cyber Security Workshop last month.
Poster winners: Three students from Washington High’s business department were named winners at last month’s at the Holiday Inn in Martinsburg.
First-place winner Hagan Wilt received a Nook and a $50 Barnes and Noble gift card.
Miranda Ashbaugh won second place and took home a Nook and a Blue Ridge Community and Technical College mug while third-place finisher Tyler Mattei also won a Nook.
Attendance pays off: Students at Washington High School who recorded perfect attendance during the first nine weeks of school were eligible for rewards in the form of $10 gift cards to Subway, Burger King, Chick-fil-A and Regal Cinemas.
The 15 students selected at random as winners were Jonathan Baltzell, Brittany Bush, Eyruslem Butera, Autumn Carver, John Dodson, Savannah Hare, Lucy Hernandez, Austin Lang, Cara Lavigne, Abby Lesznar, Emma Locarnini, Rhonda Rocombe, Lauren Scuka, Andres Siles-Loayza and Samantha Wermers.
Saab scholars: Sydney Holliday and Chelsea Hampton have been awarded the Kiwanis Club of Shepherdstown’s Paul M. Saab Memorial Kiwanis Scholarships for 2013.
Sydney is a recent graduate of Jefferson High where she was active in the Key Club while Chelsea graduated from Washington High, where she served as her school’s Key Club president.
Sydney, the daughter of John and Shelly Holliday of Shepherdstown, is studying pre-med at Shepherd University and plans to become a dermatologist.
Chelsea, the daughter of Charles and Joyce Hampton, also attends Shepherd. Her major is psychology and she plans to become a family counselor.
Calvin Whittington, the president of the Kiwanis Club of Shepherdstown, presented the scholarships. The scholarship was established in 2001
to honor the longtime professor of biology at Shepherd who was a charter member of the Kiwanis Club of Shepherdstown.
He’d taught at Shepherd for 37 years before passing away April 25, 2001. A member of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, he was a vocalist with Shepherd’s Masterworks Chorale and the director of Shepherd’s Elderhostel program.
Cadets make the grade: Eighth-grader Tyson Marlow of Charles Town recently was named “Cadet of the Month” at Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Va.
His selection was based on voting by all fellow middle school cadets and faculty members. An athlete who will play basketball at FUMA this winter, Tyson’s longer-term goals include attending college on an Air Force scholarship.
Meanwhile, two Eastern Panhandle residents attending Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Va., were among the 671 cadets named to the dean’s list for the
second semester of academic year 2012-13.
Timothy B. Hostler Jr. is a sophomore from Charles Town who is majoring in psychology while Jonathan S. Winalski, a freshman from Falling Waters, is majoring in biology.
With an enrollment of 1,600 cadets, VMI is the nation’s oldest state-supported military college. To be eligible for the dean’s list,
a cadet must have a term grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale and no grade below C.