On Feb. 16, seven Juneau-Douglas High School students were honored by school staff in a ceremony for their contributions to improving the climate and inspiring other students at JDHS.
Assistant Principal Paula Casperson opened the ceremony by noting that these students were being recognized on a very special holiday, Elizabeth Peratrovich Day.
“A role model for all students, Peratrovich stood up against injustice and inspired others with her convictions and determination, just like these students are doing at JDHS,” said Casperson.
She noted that the descriptions of these students’ accomplishments reflect words often used to describe Peratrovich, such as “diligent,” “conscientious” and “dedicated.”
Principal Ryan Alsup congratulated all students and their parents, then Casperson and Alsup awarded each student with a certificate, a legislative citation and a student recognition pin. A celebratory lunch, provided by the JDHS Parent Group, followed for the students and their parents.
Math Teacher Nathan Adams nominated junior Hunter Davis. Of Davis, he said, “Hunter is a student worthy of recognition in mathematics and general academics. Hunter started at JDHS as an average student, but for this year he set a goal of attaining a 4.0 grade point average. Hunter just missed that goal first semester, but his progress leaves no doubt in anyone’s mind that he will attain that 4.0”
Rafael Flores-Williams, a senior, was nominated by Heather Ridgway of the Ceramics Department. Ridgeway said, “Rafael is an excellent listener — he did very well on my quiz, proving he heard things and learned things many other students missed. He’s quiet, but he’ll share the answers when I ask for class response to thoughtful questions. He’s patient and respectful and always cleans-up after himself, often helping his table mates clean-up up in the process. He really puts his mind and hands to work during studio time and he has a wonderful project to show for it.”
Gaye Willis in the attendance office nominated senior Ashley Gundersen. Of Gundersen, Willis said, “Ashley is my aide at the attendance office during third period. She helps write passes, deliver notes and do other tasks as assigned, but the thing that I find especially impressive is how diligent she is in using the extra time. She always has a book or worksheet out and is studying really hard. I’m impressed with her quest for knowledge, her hard work and her wise use of time. These are all great examples to her peers.”
Teacher Vicki Nelson nominated Chevelle Hogan, a senior. In her nomination, Nelson said, “Chevelle’s good character shows daily through her work ethic, dedication to tasks and kindness toward others. She strives to do well in every area, whether it is academics, on the job or with helping others. She is definitely a JDHS unsung heroine.”
Construction Trades teachers Colin Dukes and Craig Mapes jointly nominated junior Ashli Kikendall. They said, “Ashli has been a constant pleasure to work with from her first day as a ninth-grader to the present. She is always willing to go out of her way to help other students while remaining humble. She is extremely positive even when things are not going well, and she always has creative solutions to perplexing problems. In short, she is a great student and an amazing person that should be recognized for her contributions to this school.”
Kristy Germain in the English Department nominated freshman Kathryn Noreen. Germain said, “Kathryn participated in the Poetry Out Loud recitation contest. She first competed in our class contest and then the all-Juneau contest. I was impressed with Kathryn’s dedication and positive attitude about the experience. There were other students who chose not to participate because they didn’t want to get up in front of the audience or put in the time to perfecting their poem recitations. Kathryn did put in extra time practicing her poem with other students and an instructional coach. I also really appreciate Kathryn’s positive attitude in class. She always has a smile on her face and is nice to all of her classmates. She is also a conscientious student with organization and follow-through.”
Germain also nominated Freya Shrestha, a freshman. Of Shrestha, Germain said, “Freya is a wonderful student in Introduction to Literature. Writing is a passion for Freya; she enjoys vocabulary and word choice. Freya recently competed in the Poetry Out Loud competition. She put in extra work at memorizing her poem, perfecting her presentation with gestures and voice inflection, and working with peers and an instructional coach on poetry recitation.”