SHS announces 2019 valedictorian, salutatorian

05/16/2019 10:30 AM
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Sequoyah High School officials selected Acey Hagar, left, as the 2019 graduating class’s valedictorian and Hannah Jimenez as salutatorian. COURTESY
TAHLEQUAH – Sequoyah High School named Acey Hagar as the class of 2019 valedictorian and Hannah Jimenez as salutatorian.

Hagar, 18, of Stilwell, is the son of Curtis and Jennifer Hagar. He is the valedictorian with a 4.46 GPA and will attend the University of Arkansas to major in computer engineering. He may also double-major in computer science or pursue a minor in that field, he said. He added that he eventually plans to obtain a master’s degree in computer engineering.

Hagar received the Cherokee Nation Valedictorian Scholarship for $1,000, the Baldor Scholarship worth $3,000, and the New Arkansas Resident Tuition Award, which covers 80 percent of the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition for students.

“I believe there are many students among my class that are also deserving of this honor, but through hard work, determination and amazing guidance from my teachers, I have managed to distinguish myself as valedictorian of my senior class,” Hagar said. “Achieving this feat proves to me that you can do anything you set your mind to.”

Through concurrent enrollment, Hagar accumulated 21 credit hours at Northeastern State University during high school. He also participated in the robotics team, academic team, National Honors Society, Student Council, speech and debate, and drama.

“I would like to thank my loving parents for pushing me to be the best I can be,” Hagar said. “I would also like to give a special thanks to our principal, Ms. Jolyn Choate, for pushing me to go farther and farther with my educational career and really supporting me every step of the way.”

Jimenez, 18, of Tahlequah, is the class salutatorian with a 4.45 GPA and will attend Columbia University with a Columbia grant worth $72,000.

“I know that without the support of my family, friends and teachers, I would not have succeeded in the manner in which I have,” Jimenez said. “I share this honor with all of those who have taught me, influenced me and empowered me throughout these four years. Throughout many ups and downs I am proud of what I was able to accomplish and grateful for the amazing memories I have made.”

Jimenez is the daughter of Brenda and Narno Jimenez. She plans to major in drama and theater studies or environmental biology and sustainable development. Her goal is to make a positive difference on the world, whether through the arts, through her passion for science and conservation, or both.

While attending Sequoyah, Jimenez completed 24 hours of concurrent enrollment at NSU. She also participated in the National Honor Society, American Indian Science and Engineering Society, the Medical Careers Club, 4-H, drama, speech and debate, Student Council, the history club, Students Working Against Tobacco, and the HOPE (Honoring Our People’s Existence) Club.

At 6:30 p.m. on May 17 in The Place Where They Play gym, the Sequoyah class of 2019 will graduate. Graduating seniors have accumulated more than $2.3 million in scholarships and grants to date. The graduating class of 89 students also had a Gates Millennium Scholar and three students accepted to Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, Stanford and Brown.

“The Sequoyah High School Class of 2019 is to be commended for their accomplishments as they prepare for the next stage in their lives,” Sequoyah Superintendent Leroy Qualls said. “We will miss seeing these students each day here on our campus, but we know they are poised to do great things.”


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