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Altha School Honors Top Two Graduates

The Class of 2009 is counting down to graduation day and over at Altha School, two students have been honored as top graduates. Caitlyn Bruner has been named valedictorian of her senior class at Altha. The daughter of Ben and Teressa Bruner of Marianna, Caitlyn is setting her sights on a pharmaceutical career. “After I graduate, I plan to attend Chipola College to attain my associates degree,” she remarks. “I will then transfer to the University of Florida to pursue a degree in Pharmacy.” Where does she see herself in 10 years? “I will be finished with pharmacy school and will be working in the city of my choice,” she says. “I hope to travel during this time in both the United States and abroad. I also plan to be married and thinking about starting a family.” Caitlyn explains that several people inspired her as she reached her academic goals in high school. “First and foremost, my parents have always pushed me to do my best and accepted nothing less. Without their motivation and encouragement, I would not have even come close to receiving this honor. I was always told to be the best I could be, and settle for nothing less than what is perfect for me. I owe any success I may ever attain to my parents.” Math has always been her best subject, but she has most enjoyed working in the culinary program at Altha under the leadership of Marie Granger. “This class is a break from the writing I have to do in the rest of my classes (most of the time) and it is a time where I can be creative,” says Caitlyn. As for her secret to success, Caitlyn emphasizes, “I do my homework. That is where most of your grades come from, and it prepares you for the tests. I usually don’t even have to study because I’m already prepared.” For those reaching for high academic goals of their own, Caitlyn offers this advice: “Don’t stress out. Stress doesn’t help you at all, it only makes your day worse. You are far more likely to succeed when you are positive and relaxed. Simply get everything done on time and do your best.” Earning

David John Griswold, Jr – Altha Salutatorian

salutatorian honors at Altha is David John Griswold, Jr., the son of Clay and Sherry O’Neal, and David and Debbie Griswold, all of Altha. “The person that most inspired me to reach this goal is my Pops because he showed that with hard work he was able to achieve his goal,” says David. “That led me to believe in myself.” David’s college path will move him out of the panhandle, but back to his hometown. “After graduation I plan to move to Kissimmee/ St.Cloud where I grew up and attend Valencia Community College,”he remarks. “I am going to pursue a degree in Criminal Justice. I plan to earn my AA degree and then transfer to the University of Central Florida where I will pursue a Ph. D. in Criminal Justice.” A decade from now, David’s not sure where he will be, but says, “I just hope to be out of college and working somewhere as an investigator.” During his high school years, science was David’s favorite subject. “I love learning about anything that has to do with the earth, the body, forces between two things, and the chemical side of things. It was also my favorite subject because of the learning experiences I had. I was fortunate to have had two very skilled science teachers throughout my high school career, Mr. Kevin Hand and Mrs. Sally Sims.” David has a couple of secrets to his success. “I studied very hard when exam time came around,” he explains, adding, “Another key to my success is that I stayed organized as far as when assignments and projects were due.” To the underclassmen striving for academic achievement, David advises: “You should never give up. Always try your hardest. Be all that you can be.”

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