Virgin Valley High School Seniors Awarded for Excellence

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Graduating seniors are ready to walk the halls for the last time at Virgin Valley High and move on to accomplishments beyond the walls of the school but not before being recognized for the accomplishments within.

David Ballweg (pictured back right) reached into his own pockets to see that every one of the 15 applicants for the Mesquite Police Department Scholarship received a $500 award for their excellence because he and the officers said, “They’re all worthy, we just can’t decide who is the “most” worthy.” Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

David Ballweg (pictured back right) reached into his own pockets to see that every one of the 15 applicants for the Mesquite Police Department Scholarship received a $500 award for their excellence because he and the officers said, “They’re all worthy, we just can’t decide who is the “most” worthy.” Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Virgin Valley Artist’s Association President Jean Winch and the board members said, “We can’t choose who to give the more money to or the less money.  So Winch went back to the board and they found a little more money to ensure that all the worthy applicants received a substantial award. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Virgin Valley Artist’s Association President Jean Winch and the board members said, “We can’t choose who to give the more money to or the less money. So Winch went back to the board and they found a little more money to ensure that all the worthy applicants received a substantial award. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

High School Counselor, Christy Davis (not pictured), welcomed the students and guests of the VVHS senior awards with a speech which ended with the statement that the excellence the students achieved couldn’t have been possible without the support of their parents or guardians.  Lynne and David Anderson are very proud to have supported Sara in her outstanding high school achievements and are confident that Sara will shine just as brightly in her college years and beyond. Sara is one of 4 VVHS class of 2015 Valedictorians; just one of her many outstanding achievements. (Not pictured are the other three recipients: Brett Lee Black, Taylor Marie Bryant and Leslie Pacheco) Sarah has received, among many other monetary awards, a full tuition scholarship to Brigham Young University. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

High School Counselor, Christy Davis (not pictured), welcomed the students and guests of the VVHS senior awards with a speech which ended with the statement that the excellence the students achieved couldn’t have been possible without the support of their parents or guardians. Lynne and David Anderson are very proud to have supported Sara in her outstanding high school achievements and are confident that Sara will shine just as brightly in her college years and beyond. Sara is one of 4 VVHS class of 2015 Valedictorians; just one of her many outstanding achievements. (Not pictured are the other three recipients: Brett Lee Black, Taylor Marie Bryant and Leslie Pacheco) Sarah has received, among many other monetary awards, a full tuition scholarship to Brigham Young University. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Dr. Peggy Purner awarded the Mesquite Exchange Club’s A.C.E. Award (Accepting the Challenge of Excellence) to Yashaira Gonzalez for overcoming adversity and rising to the challenge of graduating and going on to higher education. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Dr. Peggy Purner awarded the Mesquite Exchange Club’s A.C.E. Award (Accepting the Challenge of Excellence) to Yashaira Gonzalez for overcoming adversity and rising to the challenge of graduating and going on to higher education. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Gabriel Rico Medina, Sara Jane Anderson and Kaitlyn Michelle Frump (not pictured) “These kids received so many recognition and scholarship awards during the evening, one would have thought they were training for the Olympics,” said one audience member toward the end of the ceremony. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Gabriel Rico Medina, Sara Jane Anderson and Kaitlyn Michelle Frump (not pictured) “These kids received so many recognition and scholarship awards during the evening, one would have thought they were training for the Olympics,” said one audience member toward the end of the ceremony. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

VVHS Drama teacher and Interact Club advisor Kelly Zarndt gives a tear-filled speech along with special honors to Kaitlyn Frump for her club leadership and outstanding community service work. Kaitlyn was not only the recipient of many achievement awards, but she also received over $80,000 in both local and national scholarship money. Frump is the only Nevada recipient in the history of the state to have been awarded the Horatio Alger Scholarship. Frump is confident that she will one day be either the CEO of her own company or someone else’s. She plans on receiving a MBA from Southern Utah University. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

VVHS Drama teacher and Interact Club advisor Kelly Zarndt gives a tear-filled speech along with special honors to Kaitlyn Frump for her club leadership and outstanding community service work. Kaitlyn was not only the recipient of many achievement awards, but she also received over $80,000 in both local and national scholarship money. Frump is the only Nevada recipient in the history of the state to have been awarded the Horatio Alger Scholarship. Frump is confident that she will one day be either the CEO of her own company or someone else’s. She plans on receiving a MBA from Southern Utah University. Photo by Teri Nehrenz.

Virgin Valley High School senior awards banquet was held on May 21, 2015.  Seniors were rewarded generously for their efforts and achievements above and beyond the call of duty.  Students received both awards and a generous amount of scholarship money.

Students honored were the ones who made a difference in the time they walked the walls of the school in both their classrooms and their community.  “These students made activities successful, led teams to championships, brought powerful discussions to the classroom, represented the school on national levels.  They promoted, by example, hard work and self-sacrifice, took responsibilities on and even under its’ heavy weight stood strong and steadfast in the face of judgement, criticism and doubt”, said school counselor Christy Davis in her speech as she welcomed the students and their guests.

Students were awarded with over $300,000 in national scholarships and a very generous $72,150 in local scholarship money from both organizations and private individuals in Mesquite.

The general tone of the local organizations was that their decisions on the recipients were a hard one.  David Ballweg was quoted as saying, “It’s not difficult to decide which one is worthy, they all are…the tough part is deciding which one is “most” worthy.”  As it ended up he couldn’t decide so he reached into his own pocket to see that each and every one of the 15 worthy applicants received a $500 scholarship from the Mesquite Police Department.

Ballweg and the police weren’t the only local organization or individual who was stumped and decided to find some more money to accommodate the worthy applicants.  Virgin Valley Artists Association President Jean Winch said, “This year our board voted to give away a certain amount of money.  The money comes from hard working volunteers.  We received some scholarship applications and when it was brought back to me, we discussed them and our scholarship committee said, “We can’t choose who to give the more money to or the less money.  So I said let’s see what we can do and went back to the board and we found a little more money.”  What they managed to find was $2000 for each of the three applicants which Winch presented to Reyna Salazar, Andrea Melchor and Valeria Gasca-Prado.

Five of the VVHS students are the recipients of our armed forces scholarships and include Hector Garcia who will be joining our US Marine Corps, Brandon Haun and Valentina Covarubias who are entering the US Army.  Both Haun and Covarubias received over $65,000 for their scholarship awards.  Kegan Biasi has joined our US Air Force and will be off soon to training and a bright future.  Future Sailor William Scott Douglas will be receiving from the US Navy 100% college tuition, Salary Pay, 30 days a year paid leave, 100% benefits and world travel opportunities.

There is no doubt that these award and scholarship recipients have bright futures ahead of them.  The VVHS cafeteria was filled to capacity with students, parents, siblings and faculty that have and will continue to support these rising stars as they go their separate ways to conquer their challenges and share their talents with the world beyond the lockers, hallways, classrooms and community of the VVHS and Mesquite.

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