A total of 28 rising sophomores who attend six different high schools in Vance County have completed the week-long Vance County School of Excellence Program.
The students attended the program, June 12-16, with each day’s session beginning at Vance-Granville Community College.
Students participating in the School of Excellence for 2017 included: Robert Hopper and Jabrial Steed, both of Vance County Early College High School; Dinah Baldwin, Daniel Clemente, Victoria Glasscock, La’Zariah Harris, Chris Stevenson, Kristophe Burwell, Ava Eahart, Samayia Floyd, Daesha Johnson, Payton Rainey and Ashley Zuniga, all of Southern Vance High School; Terrance Downing, Christian Green, Thomas Murphy, Maximus Parham, Jennifer Sanchez, Nigee Shearin, Kali Wiggs, Tyere Wiggins and Bryton Yarborough, all of Northern Vance High School; Austyn Abbott and Natalie Stone, both of Kerr-Vance Academy; Margaret Bobbitt and Chris Harp, both of Vance Charter School; and Alexis Cruz and Ian Simmons, both of Henderson Collegiate.
This was the 30th year of operation for the School of Excellence. The leadership program is designed for students who have completed their first year of high school and are the top academic achievers in their respective classes.
Students participate in five all-day sessions that include a community service day, a team building day, an industry day when they visit five local businesses, a day featuring educational opportunities at Vance-Granville Community College and a visit to Kerr Lake, the Vance County 911 Center, the Vance County Courthouse and the McGregor Hall Performing Arts Center. On their final day, the students heard a presentation by Whitney Espinosa, a 2014 graduate of Northern Vance High School, that focused on how to overcome personal obstacles.
This year the students participated in their community service day by assisting volunteers with Rebuilding Hope to repair wheelchair ramps at local homes. Their team building day was held at Keats Point Farm, owned and operated by the family of John, Angela and Andrea Hyson. Students interacted with trained horses on the farm to solve problems and meet challenges posed to them. On the industry day, they toured Franklin Brothers Nursery, Mars Pet Care, the Walmart Distribution Center, Carolina Country Snacks and Vulcan Materials’ Greystone Quarry.
Students shown in the accompanying photo include, front row from left: Thomas Murphy, Ian Simmons, Payton Rainey, Alexis Cruz, Jabrial Steed, Dinah Baldwin and Victoria Glasscock. On the second row, from left, are Maximus Parham, Bryton Yarborough, Margaret Bobbitt, Robert Hopper, Chris Harp, Nigee Shearin and La’Zariah Harris. Students on the third row, from left, are Austyn Abbott, Chris Stevenson, Jennifer Sanchez, Natalie Stone, Ashley Zuniga and Daniel Clemente. On the back row, from left, are Kali Wiggs, Daesha Johnson, Kristophe Burwell, Terrance Downing, Tyere Wiggins, Christian Green and Samayia Floyd. Ava Eahart was unavailable for the photo.