Lowndes Academy valedictorian, salutatorian contribute to banner athletic year

Published 5:13 pm Friday, June 30, 2023

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When valedictorian Harley Hooper and salutatorian Molly Powell spoke during the May 19 graduation, they not only topped off a great academic year, but they also celebrated a winning year of athletics for Lowndes Academy.

Headmaster Barry Mohun said, “We are just so proud of Harley and Molly.”

Both were involved in many activities at the school, and Mohun said they also found ways to give their best efforts to sports while maintaining high GPAs.

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“The valedictorian and salutatorian really played a big part in two state championships that we had. It is just awesome that they have the balance and the discipline to do both. They were very active in athletics, and they also had the discipline to also keep their academic studies up,” Mohun added.

When asked what memoires she would cherish most, Hooper answered, “Playing sports and building close relationships with my teammates. We pushed through and exemplified perseverance which resulted in winning many championships.” 

Powell said time at Lowndes Academy is dear to her.

“Growing up at Lowndes Academy has taught me many things, but sports have impacted me the most. Being in several state championships and playing for such good coaches has taught me valuable lessons and has given me memories that will last a lifetime,” Powell said. 

Harley hopes that freshmen entering her alma mater will find ways to enjoy the high school journey. “Do not wish the little moments away. Do not look too far ahead into the future or worry about what has happened in the past. Make sure to appreciate what is happening now,” Harley stated. Molly said, “High school can be a lot. Stress comes and goes but don’t let it become your life. Making a bad grade is not the end of the world. No matter what life throws at you, always remember your emotions and feelings matter.”

Going forward, the girls said they have special wishes for their classmates.

“Throughout my life, there have been many ups and downs, and without this amazing community around me, I don’t know what I would do. I hope that you are still using these valuable lessons and leaning on God throughout your journey,” said Powell.

Hooper offers advice for classmates as they move forward, “It is okay to fail. You learn from your mistakes, and that is all a part of being who you are.”

Mohun looked back on the year that produced the 2023 graduating class. He is optimistic and encouraged about their futures noting the class shows great determination.

“It is sort of a unique class, and I really think for the most part that this class has pretty set ideas on what they want to do, and I feel they will fulfill their dreams. It is really good to see that in students,” Mohun said.