Much like the standout students chosen before them, these high school seniors’ successes are not confined to the classroom.
This year’s academic all-stars are also busy with athletics and school and community activities.
“They all are academically outstanding in what they do, but they are well-rounded in their activities and their lives,” said Austin Turney, a former Lawrence school board member who was one of four judges to select the all-stars.
The Journal-World’s 2010 Academic All-Stars are Lauren Barnes and Molly Bostwick, Baldwin High School; Olivia N. Brien and Brian E. Henry, Oskaloosa High School; Caitleen Desetti, Free State High School; Matthew Drahozal, Lawrence High School; Abby Guenther, Ottawa High School; Emily Jefferies, Tonganoxie High School; Hogan Randall, Veritas Christian School; and, Katherine Volle, Perry-Lecompton High School.
The students and their parents were honored during a luncheon Wednesday at Pachamama’s, 800 N.H. The selection criteria included the students’ academic achievements and accomplishments in extracurricular activities.
They also wrote an essay on what aspect of their education has been most vital to them and worth saving from school district budget cuts.
The guest speaker for the luncheon, Rick Doll, Lawrence public schools superintendent, told the students they would face challenges as they move on to college and into the world. He said the world’s great explorers, like Columbus and Magellan, rose to challenge and were not paralyzed by fear.
“They were no different than you,” Doll said. “What made them special I think was their ability, in fact their desire, to invite and embrace a challenge, knowing that it could lead to great opportunity.”
The judges were Turney; Rand Ziegler, a Baker University vice president and dean of the College of Arts and Sciences; Robert Harrington, a Kansas University professor of psychology and research in education; and 6News Producer Lindsey Slater.
The students received a gift during the luncheon Wednesday. The Journal-World has honored one class of outstanding students annually since 1997.