Hinkle awarded for Character in Action

Published 12:43 pm Monday, September 18, 2023

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Each month the Juvenile Court of Lowndes County recognizes one youth who has displayed the qualities of good character in their school and community. To kick of the court’s fifth year-long initiative, Jaquan Hinkle was selected to receive the September Character in Action Award.

Hinkle, a resident of Burkville, is a good student who enjoys studying math as a seventh grader at Hayneville Middle School. He was nominated to receive the award by his teacher, who said his love for education shines bright among his classmates.

“Jaquan is a talented and committed student in each of his classes,” his nomination read. “According to all his teachers, Jaquan’s character is unmatched. He is highly courteous, respectful, responsible, and optimistic.”

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Hinkle’s mother, Julia Murphy, said she is proud of her son and the good character he displays at home and at school. The family reminds Hinkle to complete his assignments and study, rewarding him for high marks as an encouragement.

“I always tell him to take his time and don’t rush,” Murphy said. “We reward him when he does well and try to get him to make all A’s. If he gets all A’s my brother gives him $100.”

Murphy said she also urges Hinkle to mind his manners and to show respect to his teachers.

“We always teach him to be respectful to the teachers and adults because they don’t have to be your teacher,” Murphy said. “There are a lot of children who are disrespectful. We remind him to say, ‘Yes ma’am and no ma’am’ and to be respectful to a teacher or any adult.”

Johnson referred to the qualities Hinkle displays and read from his nomination for the award.

“Jaquan act with honesty and never speaks negatively about anyone. He is extremely hardworking and committed to his academic endeavors, as seen by his grades,” Johnson read. “He’s courteous, respectful, responsible, optimistic – those are attributes that each one of us need each and every day.”

According to Johnson, parental support is an important component for character development.

“I have a sneaking suspicion that some of these things are coming from someone in the home who has made the decision to instill those values in the child, and its pushing that child to succeed. It’s pushing that child to be optimistic, to have a positive attitude, to be trustworthy, to be respectful.”

Hinkle received a t-shirt, certificate and a $50 Walmart gift card as a reward. He is the first Lowndes County student to receive the award for the 2023-2024 academic year and was honored at the court’s 5th Annual Celebration of Youth banquet on Sept. 11 with 2022 award recipients Jamesha Boone, Ethan Boyden, Elgin Brazil, Shar’daijai Harris, Zaniya Fleeton, and Denyejah Jones.