Chances are, we all worked hard at something in high school. Whether it was giving a little extra time to that tricky physics project, reading all of The Iliad even though it didn’t make sense, or spending late hours on the field or the stage perfecting a craft that meant the world to you.
This year, ten students at Jenison High School prove to us that hard work pays off in big ways! According to longtime counselor, Terry Dykstra, “This year, a senior would need a cumulative GPA of, approximately, 4.14 in order to be in the Top 10. To achieve that, a student would need to have taken several AP courses, and would need, virtually, all “A’s” in all of their courses from grades 9-12.”
In order to achieve this high level of success students must put in an incredible amount of effort and hard work. “These students are highly motivated, they are focused on success, they are incredibly organized, and they are willing to put in the work necessary to accomplish their goals. Most, if not all, have come to the high school with these traits, in some form or another, but high school course work [and especially their numerous AP courses] has pushed them and challenged them, as the “bar” continues to be raised.
Of course, being in a classroom is only one part of the lives of these students. JPS works hard to support a comprehensive education for students and our Top 10 exemplifies the importance of this. “For nearly all of the Top 10, they are among our most involved. They are living proof that the busiest individuals often get the most accomplished. Their areas of involvement vary a bit from student to student, but in most cases, they have been involved in Music, Student Government, Athletics, Theatre, and numerous volunteer opportunities. These various activities, ultimately, build and enhance who they are and who they become in their life’s journey.”
All of our Top 10 students will be attending a 4-year institution next year whether a a large public university and or a smaller, private college. They intend to pursue majors in varying fields such as engineering, medical/health care, education, business, as well as some who haven’t quite figured out what path their futures hold.
“These students have achieved this status because of their incredible hard work and their perseverance, sometimes even in the face of adversity. They approached each day with a “never give up” attitude and a determination to see them through whatever was before them. Their parents played a vital role as “encouragers” and “cheer leaders”, and sometimes “sounding boards”. Because of this support and because of the traits that they each possess, these students will leave JHS, fully prepared and ready to meet the challenges of tomorrow.”
Tim Leonard, Valedictorian
Fiona Johnson, Salutatorian