Staff recognizes inaugural Students of the Year

Eight students, one male and one female from each cohort, were named Students of the Year by faculty and staff members. This is the inaugural year for this award which was presented to students who exemplified the Essential 8 characteristics and what it means to be a Viking.

“The idea was a collaborative brainstorm agenda item for our PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Support) Leadership team in March,” PBIS member Jerron Reese said. “[We] thought it would be a good idea to recognize a few of our students that are considered to be the upper echelon, go above and beyond of what is required, and do not seek the recognition. Similar to our End of the Year Employee Awards, [we] wanted to start a new tradition for the students.”

Each student was recognized in front of the staff and their families during a faculty meeting. Superintendent Dr. Christi Whitbeck and principal Lane Buban presented the award to each student, recognizing their character and leadership at school.

“I see Student of the Year as an opportunity to recognize students who will leave a legacy of exemplary performance at Bryan High,” Buban said. “It will be something that returning alumni can look back on and remember some of the students who have made a lasting impression on the campus.”

Over 40 students were nominated by teachers before the PBIS team reviewed the nominees and voted.

“We saw this as a way for our teachers to take the time to brag on their students that they believed to be worthy of the honor and also recognize those students that are phenomenal, but may go overlooked,” Reese said. “The goal for years to come will be to display the student’s names and photos in a commonplace for recognition on campus for anyone who walks into the doors at Bryan High to see the prestigious honor.”

Buban sees this award as a way to recognize the accomplishments and behavior of students in a positive way that will have a lasting impact on the campus as a whole.

“I felt that we needed to find ways to honor our students who exemplify the Essential 8, have good attendance, are in good standing with grades, and involved in a campus organization or club,” Buban said. “I would like to see something similar done for our outstanding teachers in the future as well.”

Students recognized the honor of being named Student of the Year and appreciated the gesture.

“Being presented with Student of the Year made me feel like I made a difference in my school for my teachers and my classmates,” junior Grace Gutierrez said. “I felt both honored and surprised by the awarded.

Other students recognize the impact the award has the potential to have on future generations of Vikings and hope that others strive to be the next recipients.

“As a senior, it meant a lot to me to be given this award in it’s first year,” senior Nick Kaspar said. “It’s cool to feel like I am leaving a legacy at the school.”

Pictures of each student and a short excerpt from their nomination can be found on page 2.