By Tony Parra: PNT Staff Writer
Portales High School students made the first of many memorable walks on Monday to accept academic awards for their scholastic work.
For the high school seniors, it was the first of many walks they will be making on the final week of their high school career. Seniors will also be making a memorable, decorative walk around the high school gym on Wednesday and Thursday for the 76th Annual Maypole and will conclude the week on Friday night as they walk towards their high school diplomas during their graduation ceremonies.
Several administrators and instructors praised senior Charles Britton for his sincerity, wisdom and leadership. They had many chances to praise Britton, who took the stage numerous times for awards.
“I can tell you without a shadow of doubt that this young man will be missed,” Nusser said. “He exhibits character above and beyond.”
Britton is the student council president, and participates in theater and choir among other activities in school.
Britton won the New Mexico Association of Principals award, ENMU scholarships, St. Helen’s Catholic Daughters Scholarship, U.S. Marine Corps Award of Excellence and other awards. He said he has scheduled 16 hours for the fall semester at Eastern New Mexico University.
“I wanted to stay close to home and it’s (ENMU) got a great theater program,” Britton said. “(Being in Portales is) going to make the transition easier. I want to get the full idea of college so I’m going to live in the dorms. I want to get the full college experience.”
Britton said he’s performed on the ENMU theater stage already as a high school student.
“I’ve been in that department for a while,” Britton said. “It’s where I belong.”
Britton was in choir along with Megan Brunson, who also won an Addie Swearingen Foundation award, an Altrusa Club scholarship and a $8,268 ENMU scholarship. Brunson will be graduating on Friday and will also be attending ENMU.
“It’s kind of stressful, but at the same time it’s a lot of fun,” Brunson said about the final week of school. “I’m looking forward to the next step after high school.”
It’s a step which will take Janelle Henry to ENMU, also. Henry won the Prudential Spirit of Community Award, Rev. Hugh Frazier Memorial Scholarship and a $9,968 ENMU scholarship.
“I’ve always wanted to be a teacher,” Henry said. “I want to teach with an emphasis in music. I have lots of family that went into teaching. I’m continuing in the family tradition.”
Christopher Smith said he’s already been accepted to ENMU and will be taking courses in the fall. Smith won the Addie Swearingen, New Mexico State University Opportunity Scholarship, a Comcast $1,000 scholarship and an $8,268 ENMU scholarship. Smith said he wants to Major in History.
“I’ve always liked it here (Portales),” Smith said. “My home is Portales. I didn’t feel like leaving.”
Nusser announced the high school students who won the New Mexico Scholar Awards. Brian Elder, Daniel Harberts, and Kari Jones were all winners, who had a 26 or higher on their ACTs and a 3.5 grade-point average. Bronson Riser won a $10,000 per year scholarship to the University of Findlay, Ohio.
Cynthia Guerrero Garcia won a Clovis Community College full-ride scholarship and the DuPuy School Board Scholarship. Michelle Miller won the Hamilton GM Country Scholarship, Ron Stockton Memorial Scholarship and NMSU Opportunity Scholarship, among other awards. Nathan Acker won the Tiny Reed Scholarship, $500 Mayor Orlando Ortega Scholarship and an ENMU scholarship. Tatum Thron won the Wells Fargo Scholarship and Portales Rotary Scholarship among other awards.
Many students were also recognized with awards for their scholastic work in math, science, fine arts, social studies, Spanish, English and athletic awards on Monday night.