15 impressive valedictorians you should know in the Class of 2019

Many Miami Valley high schools are honoring their top academic students in the Class of 2019 as valedictorians and salutatorians.

LIST OF TOP GRADS: Valedictorians and salutatorians in the region

Here’s a sampling of valedictorians from around the region — some headed to local schools like Wright State and Ohio State, while others will travel to Chicago or Alabama.

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We asked all local high schools for information on their valedictorians and salutatorians.

Alexis McGregor, Franklin

Alexis McGregor is Franklin High School’s valedictorian. Lexi plans on attending the University of Cincinnati next year and majoring in chemistry with the pursuit of becoming an OBGYN. Lexi has an overall GPA of 4.55. Lexi has been involved in National Honor Society, Student Government, Spanish National Honor Society and is a Boxer. Additionally, Lexi will continue her boxing career with the University of Cincinnati’s Boxing Club. Lexi is also the winner of the McLane Foundation scholarship of $100,000 and the winner of the Louie F. Cox Memorial AK Steel Foundation African-American Scholarship.

Kaleb Marshall, Lebanon

Kaleb Marshall is the co-valedictorian of the class of 2019 at Lebanon High School. He will be attending The Ohio State University to major in electrical engineering in the fall. Other than academics, he has played soccer for the past 12 years. Kaleb is also an avid card player and was head of Card and Board Game Club at Lebanon this year. He would like to give special thanks to his teachers who have helped him so much in becoming the top of the class. Kaleb would also like to thank his parents, Rob and Lori, and his sister Kaitlin for supporting through all of his life. Kaleb is excited to see what this new chapter of his life has in store for him.

Tyler Dreischarf, Bellbrook

As well as being co-valedictorian, Tyler Dreischarf is the class president, an NHS member, and captain on both the track and cross country teams. Besides academics, Tyler devotes his time primarily to running, playing the piano, reading, and listening to music. He takes pride in his knowledge of music, from Kanye West to Frank Zappa to Sly Stone. He plans to attend the University of Alabama this fall to study chemical engineering.

Emily Palmer, Greene County Career Center

Emily Palmer has been named valedictorian of Greene County Career Center’s Class of 2019. Palmer is from Beavercreek and enrolled in the Veterinary Science program. At Greene County Career Center she was active in FFA and was a member of the veterinary science team that twice placed in the top six at the State Career Development Event. She was also a member of the team that placed fourth at the national Big E event in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 2018. At Beavercreek High School she was active in band and other clubs throughout her high school career. She will attend Wright State University on a full tuition scholarship to study sports medicine.

Claire Moore, Xenia

Claire Moore was named one of Xenia High School’s 11 Graduates of Distinction in the Class of 2019. The school does not name a valedictorian. The daughter of Rita and Matthew Moore, Claire will attend The Ohio State University, where she plans to major in zoology. Among her many activities, Claire served as Xenia’s Student Council senior class president. She was also part of the National Honor Society, Renaissance, Chemistry Club and Spanish Club. She participated in the Look to Greene youth leadership effort, and she played volleyball.

Tessa Arnett, Piqua

Tessa Arnett is the valedictorian of Piqua High School. She grew up in Piqua her entire life, and her parents are Michelle and Mike Arnett. An active member of the school and community, Tessa is in Marching Band, Symphonic Band, Academic Challenge, National Honor Society, Harry Potter Club, Link Leaders, and Big Brothers Big Sisters. She has held multiple leadership roles in marching band and is co-founder of the Harry Potter Club. She’s been a member of Top 100 for four years, part of National History Day for three years, and has worked as a cashier at Cassano’s for the past two years. She plans on going to Bowling Green University to major in Asian Studies and to minor in either Chemistry or International Business. She would like to go into translation and diplomacy.

Phoebe Campbell, Tri-Village

Phoebe Campbell, the daughter of Jane Combs and Rob Campbell, is one of four valedictorians graduating from Tri-Village High School. She participated in competition, basketball, and football cheerleading. She was also a member of the competition dance team and varsity softball. In addition, she was a member of Key Club and acted as class President, Vice President, and Treasurer over her years of high school. She graduated from Edison State Community College with my Associates of Arts degree with highest honors this spring. She plans to attend Miami University in the fall, majoring in Professional Writing and minoring in Philosophy and Law. She then intends to continue her higher education through law school.

Zachary Niswonger, Troy

Zachary Niswonger is the son of Heather and Steve Niswonger. Born in Reynoldsburg, Ohio, he moved to Troy in first grade, where he is graduating with a GPA of 4.63. Zach spent his time outside of school at football, which he played all four years, volunteering for National Honor Society, or Reading Buddies. After high school, Zach will attend The Ohio State University where he will major in chemical engineering in their Honors program. He plans to attend graduate school after completing his degree and plans to conduct research in the medical industry.

William Miller III, Northmont

William Miller III is traveling out of state to the University of Chicago to major in Physics, with a minor in Human Rights, or adding a double major in Political Science. Will was a member of the Superintendent’s Advisory Committee, while playing baseball and participating in Academic Challenge. He’s also in Wind Ensemble and a member of the Legislative Committee for School Safety.

Derek Winner, Brookville

Derek Winner is enrolled in the School of Engineering at the University of Dayton where he will pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering. Derek was an active member of the Brookville FFA Chapter, the National Honor Society, and enjoyed playing varsity basketball and soccer for the Blue Devils. Derek enrolled in the Precision Machining program at MVCTC his junior and senior years where he was a member of the National Technical Honor Society and was named as an Ohio SkillsUSA Champion his senior year in the area of precision machining. Derek contributes much of his success to the high expectations put upon him by the staff at both Brookville and MVCTC. Derek is the son of Dale and Denise Winner.

Hunter Allen Hayes, Horizon Science Academy

Hunter Allen Hayes is ranked number 1 in his class of 38 students with a cumulative GPA of 4.08. This fall, Hunter will be attending Wright State University on a full-ride scholarship, majoring in Mechanical Engineering. He has earned a total of 15 College Credit Plus credits through Sinclair Community College. He is Co-President of the National Honor Society, a member of the Concept Young Scholar’s Program and student council, and will be graduating with an Ohio Honor’s Diploma. He participated in numerous Blood Drives and has earned his Red Cross cords. In addition to all of this, he was a member of HSA’s Robotics program, and received Excellence on his sophomore project for the Ohio State Science Fair.

Jessica Orozco, West Carrollton

Valedictorian Jessica Orozco has spent her entire school career in the West Carrollton School District. She will be graduating with a 4.496 GPA. She has played violin with the orchestra for seven years and is the section leader of the second violins. Her interests include music, Hapkido, and writing. She plans to attend The Ohio State University in the fall to study Journalism and Spanish.

Sara Yacoub, Archbishop Alter

Sara Yacoub will be attending Case Western Reserve University’s BS/MD program next fall as a Cognitive Sciences major, minoring in Spanish. During her time at Alter, the Kettering resident served as Class President, Co-President of Science Olympiad and Philosophy Club, Chief of Communications for the Student Advancement Advisory Board and Optimist Club, Co-Captain of Alter’s Tennis Team, and participated in numerous other clubs, including NHS, peer ministry, and various service-oriented extracurriculars. Sara is very grateful for the opportunity she was afforded to grow in faith, knowledge, and leadership at Alter and is excited for the next chapter in her life.

Elizabeth Melton, National Trail

Elizabeth Melton is the valedictorian for National Trail High School in Preble County. Elizabeth was a Rotary Honor Scholar and Preble County’s Franklin B. Walter All-Scholastic Award Recipient. She played varsity soccer, was a member of Student Council, including Class of 2019 President, officer of the Renaissance Club, member of National Honor Society, and member of Art Club. The daughter of Darrell and Kim Melton, she will be attending Case Western Reserve University, double-majoring in biology and psychology on a pre-med track.

Annie Bete, Carroll

Annie will attend The Ohio State University to major in Computer Science and Engineering with a minor in Art. During her time at Carroll, Annie was captain of the cross country and track teams, earning All-Ohio honors for indoor track in high jump. She was Vice President of the National Honors Society and National Art Honors Society, and her art has been featured in the K12 Gallery. A Beavercreek resident, Annie has interned at Wright Patterson Air Force Base for the past two summers as part of the International Genetically Engineered Machine Competition. She will be a Wright Scholar Research Assistant this summer. Annie has also helped lead many retreats and service projects during high school.

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