Submitted by Marva Smith
The 2020 graduating class of Greene County High School was honored and celebrated through a first-time GEAR UP AL initiative, A Senior Class Installation Ceremony that was coordinated by Mrs. Marva Smith GEAR UP Site Facilitator. Mrs. Smith has worked with the current twelfth grade students since they were eighth grade students at Carver Middle School and Paramount Jr. High School. This program was held on Thursday, August 29, 2019 at 9:30am in the school gymnasium. The entire program was everything that an upcoming graduate could imagine at the commencing of the academic year prior to graduation. –
Each person who spoke during the program rendered words of encouragement and motivation for completion of this year and years ahead. The speaker for the occasion was Mrs. Katie Jones-Powell, retired educator and Superintendent of Sumter County School District. She advised them to develop an action plan TODAY if they do not have one already and to be date-specific in executing the plan. It is imperative that the plan include what they intend to do immediately after graduation and work toward the goal. Mrs. Jones-Powell said, “You have only three options: 1) go to college, whether 2-year or 4-year institution, 2) to the military, or 3) straight into the workforce”. In conclusion, she challenged them to be all they can be.
Other individuals who had encouraging and motivating statements for the Seniors were Dr. Samantha Briggs, GEAR UP AL Director, UAB, Birmingham, AL; School Board Member President, Hon. Leo Branch; Dr. Corey Jones, recently appointed Superintendent of Greene County School System; Also, communicating words of encouragement were Counselor Tamika Thompson; English Instructor Mrs. Tura Edwards, Assistant Principal and GEAR UP Team Leader Ms. Andrea Perry and Principal Willie Simmons.
The students were motivated through song from Choral Music instructor, Mr. Siegfried Williams and a Video Clip, “Go to College” by Former First Lady Michelle Obama. But to culminate and top the event off, the students read the Senior Oath followed by pinning with a gold CLASS OF 2020 lapel pin by a parent, guardian or faculty member. That was most definitely the highlight of program.
Thanks to Senior Class Advisors Ms. Tameshia Porter, Mr. Larry Burnette (program Chair), Mrs. Ka’Needa Coleman, Mr. Siegfried Williams and Mrs. Tamika Thompson for your assistance.