It’s the season of mortarboards and diplomas, a time when high school seniors across Knox County are being recognized for their achievements.
Graduating from high school is a great accomplishment, but commencement is also a chance to honor students whose hard work and dedication helped them stand out from the crowd.
The 16 valedictorians highlighted below include athletes, scientists, musicians and volunteers, and we’ve listed some (but not all!) of their high school achievements and future plans. In recent weeks, they gathered at the historic Blount Mansion, in downtown Knoxville, to shoot a video for Teacher Appreciation Week and to pose for photographs.
Their success provides a glimpse into the enormous potential of the class of 2019 and is a testament to the hard work and dedication of this year’s seniors and their teachers. Congratulations to all of this year’s graduates!
Trinity Mattress / Austin-East
Soccer team (co-captain); Dance Company (co-captain); Marching Band; Student Government Association; Project Grad; Young-Williams Animal Center (volunteer); Second Harvest Food Bank (volunteer).
Trinity will attend the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga and study pre-professional biology with a concentration in veterinary medicine.
Dane Morgan / Bearden
Ethics bowl team (co-captain); Orchestra; East Tennessee School Band and Orchestra Association Junior Clinic; Tennessee American Legion Boys State; Senior Committee.
Dane plans to study political science and economics in his post-secondary career.
Tristan Johnson / Career Magnet Academy
Class president; Student Government Association; Cross Country; National Honor Society.
Tristan will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study veterinary medicine.
Elliott Hooks / Carter
Soccer (captain); Band; Honors Band and Jazz Band; National Honor Society.
Elliott will attend Carson-Newman University and study biology.
Hanson Lam / Central
Swim team; Soccer; Tennis; National Honor Society (president); Science Club (founder and president); East Tennessee Children’s Hospital Teen Leadership Council (volunteer); Knox County Youth Health Board (volunteer); AYSO Soccer assistant coach.
Hanson will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study engineering/computer science.
Erika Yang / Farragut
Mu Alpha Theta (president); National French Honor Society (Treasurer); Science Olympiad; Oak Ridge National Laboratory intern.
Erika will attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and study applied math.
Zoe Poormon / Fulton (co-valedictorian)
Soccer (captain); Top Athlete Award; National Honor Society; HOSA; Project Grad scholar.
Zoe will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and be a pre-med major.
Eleigha Wrancher / Fulton (co-valedictorian)
Ethics Bowl (captain); Fulton ambassador; HOSA; National Honor Society; Project Grad scholar.
Eleigha will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and be a pre-med major.
Austin Zachary / Gibbs
Mu Alpha Theta (president); Tennis; Band; National Honor Society; Spanish National Honor Society.
Austin will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study nuclear engineering.
Harper Lee Kirby / Halls
Cheerleading (2018 All American); Volunteer Girls State nominee; National Honor Society; Math Honor Society; Science Honor Society; French Honor Society; Race for the Cure (volunteer); Fantasy of Trees (volunteer).
Harper will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study biochemistry.
Bryson Gullett / Hardin Valley
RoHAWKtics robotics team; CodeTN coding contest; CyberPatriot cyber security competition.
Bryson will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study computer science.
Logan Crawford / Karns
Key Club (president); Basketball; Knox County Honor Band; Indoor Drum Line; Mu Alpha Theta; National Honor Society (vice president); Youth Leadership Knoxville graduate.
Logan will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study engineering.
Macy Hudson / L&N STEM
Ultimate Frisbee Team; Swim Team; Key Club; National Honor Society; Gryphon Guide; perfect score on ACT; Shangri-La Therapeutic Academy of Riding (volunteer).
Macy will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study chemistry and physics.
Sarah Norris / Powell
National Honor Society (president); Scholars’ Bowl (captain); STEM Club (president); Student Government Association (president); Volunteer Girls State; ETEBA (volunteer intern).
Sarah will attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and study aerospace engineering.
Melody Hubbard / South-Doyle
“The Phoenix” magazine (co-editor); “OneTribe News” (director); Marching Band; Class President; National Honor Society; Student Council (president); Kiwanis Fresh Air Camp (volunteer).
Melody will attend Columbia University and study humanities.
Paul “Gabi” Nodit / West
Science Olympiad; Chess Club; Young Entrepreneur Academy; perfect score on ACT; Governor’s School for Science and Engineering.
Paul will attend the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and study bio-medical engineering.
Josh Flory is a multi-media specialist with Knox County Schools and writes this blog, Hall Pass, for the KCS website.