Talk about close — that word carried multiple meanings when it came time Thursday to announce the valedictorian and salutatKatirian of the Sulphur Springs High School Class of 2010.
The grade point averages of the top two students of the graduating class were neck and neck coming into the final year — close enough that eventual valedictorian Kathryn Elizabeth Mason was trailing salutatorian Lyndsi Brooke Bible.
They’re both National Merit Scholar Commended Students, UIL academic state qualifiers, and senior class officers.
And they’re best friends.
Finally, the duo’s ultimate GPAs were barely a hair’s breadth apart — in fact, if rounded to the nearest 1/1,000th, they could have tied and been named co-valedictorian. But in the end, Mason’s 5.634 edged out Bible’s 5.627, just enough to give Mason the title.
“Both of these students have put forth a lot of time, effort and dedication into their academic classes over the last four years,” said SSHS Principal John McCullough, looking almost as proud of the pair’s accomplishments as their fathers when making the announcement. “As a result of this hard work and commitment to excellence, these two students have finished at the top of their class.”
Mason has spent four busy years at the high school, serving as a member of the student council, Key Club and National Honor Society. She was a member of the Chamber of Commerce-sponsored High School Leadership Class, and twice competed for state titles in University Interscholastic League academic contests.
She is planning to attend Baylor University, her first step toward an eventual foray to medical school and a career as a pediatric surgeon.
The daughter of Jeff and Jackie Mason credits her achievements to determination, willingness to sacrifice fun for work, and family involvement.
“I think I made it because my parents cared,” she said, adding that both helped nudge her along over the years. “I’ve wanted to be here since I was in third grade, and my mom pushed me to make sure I achieved my dream and didn’t let it fall by the wayside.”
She didn’t exactly get to coast her way through the senior year, however.
“I was actually second until this semester,” she said. “Lyndsi’s my best friend, and we pushed each other. It’s nice that we’re both first and second.”
Jackie Mason said Katy was ahead of Bible at the beginning of their high school careers, but slipped to second her junior year.
“She and Lyndsi have done their best. It could have fallen either way,” Jackie said. “Katy was a preemie — she was born five weeks early — and we tease her that she’s going to do things on her own time.”
Jeff Mason said Katy also put her determination to work at First Baptist Church.
“She does a lot of mission work there,” he said. “She’s going to do some mission trips this summer” — including a trip to India — “and then get ready for the fall.”
Katy will go into the Baylor honors program — the University Scholars — which will allow her to do pre-med work, “and also do what I like, which is history.”
“Then I plan to go to medical school to be a pediatric surgeon,” she added.
Salutatorian Bible, daughter of Tony and Linda Bible, was also involved in a number of activities outside of class at the high school. She is president of both the senior class and Gladys Alexander Chapter of the National Honor Society, an AP Scholar, and was an integral part of the school’s 2009 State Champion UIL Spelling and Vocabulary team.
She plans to attend Sam Houston State University with a double major in psychology and education.
She says her achievements can be credited to her tenacity and persistence, but perhaps more than anything else an enviable trait, what McCullough described as “a severe aversion to procrastination.”
“I’m the last person to procrastinate,” Bible said, explaining the concept in Zen-like terms. “I think that if you finish your work, you can have more fun, because you don’t have to worry about it.”
She also made an astonishing admission for a high school student.
“I just really enjoy school — I know it’s kind of nerdy, but I think it’s pretty cool,” she said.
Her father, Tony, acknowledged extreme pride in her achievements (“Absolutely,” he said), but her mother wasn’t able to attend the ceremony — she’s currently in Baylor Hospital — but both were there for her all through high school
“My parents have been amazing, and my grandparents, too — they’ve pushed me,” said Lyndsi.
Like her best friend, when Lyndsi goes to Sam Houston State University, she will enroll in the honors program while carrying the double major “and then see where that goes.”
“I’m going to see the different areas of psychology and see if there’s something that interests me,” she said, “And if not that, I’ll do the teaching thing.”
Mason and Bible and the rest of the SSHS Class of 2010 will receive their diplomas during commencement exercises starting at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 22, at the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center.
|< Prev||Next >|