End of the Year Wrap Up: South's 62nd Year of Excellence
Saxons continued South’s history of excellence this year, gaining many achievements throughout the year and showing to the district, state, and even the entire nation what it means to be a Saxon.
This year kicked off as the first year that South returned to a block schedule with A, B, and AB days. Although it was a big shake-up from the previous year, Saxon’s didn’t let the change prevent them from keeping with the tradition of excellence.
South teachers had two nominees this year for the Crystal Apple Awards: art teacher Mrs. Katie Gilmour and English teacher Mrs. Angela Gunter. Mrs. Gilmour took home the Crystal for South.
Continuing South’s tradition of academic achievement, Michael Bryant is this year’s National Merit Finalist. He was selected from 16,000 semifinalists from high schools across the nation. The senior class this year also collectively gained millions of dollars in scholarships this year and had 37 IB diploma graduates.
44 DECA students from South made it to the national competition this year in Nashville, Tennessee. More than just an authentic business experience, it boasts the courage and determination of those who participate, and allows those involved to let their confidence blossom through hard work and effort.
This year, Saxons said their last goodbye to Holocaust survivor Al Weiner. This was the last year he came to tell his story, and the Saxon Leadership planted a tree and placed a plaque in the courtyard in his honor.
The theater kids also showed the what it means to be a Saxon as Aric Wood and Max Morter qualified for state in Duet Dramatic Acting with their scene from “The Dumbwaiter”, Francesca ‘Lemon’ Marin and Tyler Kaufman qualified with an Original Pantomime, and Rebecca Bailey, also, was awarded as an outstanding Finalist in Solo Musical.
The tradition of musical excellence was strongly continued this year. South had 4 students–Zari Crier, Brenden Greene, Hannah Serfling, and Kaitlyn Clawson–place in the top three for their respective branch of the OSAA Solo Competition. Zari Crier and Kaitlyn Clawson were among the seven winners of the Withnell scholarship for a future in music. Choir also placed first in the state, while band overcame many obstacles to place sixth in the state.
Girls Basketball placed first in the state for the second year in a row. Evina Westbrook was also selected for 2016 U18 National Basketball Team. Boys Basketball also ended up finishing third in the state.
South’s golf team showed the Saxon spirit as Ellie Slama won the 6A state golf title and Ashley Zhu was named Statesman Journal’s Athlete of the Week after a whole-in-one.
The Culinary team this year placed first at state. But that wasn’t the end of the team’s impressive achievements; They then placed fifth at nationals after a heart-pounding day of competing in Texas. South is the only public school this year to place in the top 5 in the nation.
The Clypian this year was also honored with 3 Best in Category Awards. The Clypian’s Takur Conlu was named Oregon Student Journalist of the Year, the second student in South’s history to have the honor of that title.