Top Ten Durant Cougars Of 2022


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The top ten students in the class of 2022.

Ayla Yebba, Assistant to the Editor

High school is hard enough with trying to keep up with homework, maintaining an acceptable GPA, stressing about taking 7 classes all at once while still enjoying the high school experience. Ten seniors, each year, go above and beyond, and manage to get the highest GPAs in their class of over 500 students.

In order to achieve these high ranks most if not all of these students have taken dual enrollment classes through HCC and have already obtained their Associates Degree, which has helped boost their GPAs substantially.

These top ten students receive helpful benefits from being in the top ten for their class. Overall, it looks more suitable for all colleges, more job opportunities, and internships are made more readily available. Working to be in the top ten pushes these students to have better work ethic, have determination/drive to succeed, and to consistently work harder for their goals and dreams.

The Valedictorian for the class of 2022 is senior Ashley Irovando with an astounding GPA of 9.6 weighted.

Irovando has been working towards her GPA of 9.6 since seventh grade, but really took interest in being one of the top ten in her class when she became a freshman. She started doing extra dual enrollment on top of her regular high school schedule.

“I’ve had my goals set for my career since I was in the 4th grade. Everything I have done so far is … so I can someday end up at my dream job engineering and designing rides for Disney,” said Irovando. “For me it wasn’t really about the top 10, it was about establishing a rigorous work schedule…”

Irovando applied to only 2 instate schools. She got into UF and was also offered the highest available scholarship at UCF, which is where she plans to spend her next four years.

“Being able to have these scholarship opportunities makes me feel like I have a plan for my future and [makes me] less scared of going to college,” said Irovando.

Senior Allie Sigl is the Salutatorian (2nd in class rank) and is currently holding a GPA of 8.743 weighted and 3.903 unweighted.

Her motivation for being in the top ten started when she knew that she would like to obtain her AA before graduating from high school. She was also hoping to have multiple college credits and decrease future student debt by having two years of college finished early.

“Have fun during high school while it lasts and pursue clubs, sports, and extracurriculars as passionately as academics,” said Sigl. “Surround yourself with a robust support system, take advantage of the knowledge of adults who want to see you succeed, and enjoy yourself along the way.”

Ranked 3rd in the class of 2022 is Aizlyn Potter. She first started working towards the top ten her freshman year and since then she has taken 12 AP classes and has 60 college credits through dual enrollment classes. Her GPA is currently 8.56 weighted.

“I think it’s relatively hard to make it into the top 10 but it’s pretty easy if you’re motivated and you start working on your GPA earlier in high school,” says Potter.

Potter encourages students working towards or hoping to be in the top ten to ask for advice from upperclassmen because of the experience they have.

“I’d also say to continue to take both AP and dual enrollment classes up until GPA lock their senior year just to showcase more rigor and to increase your chances of making top ten,” says Potter. “Best of luck to all the underclassmen with that goal!”

Makayla Hoppen has been working towards being in the top ten of her class since her Junior year, which isn’t that long compared to other students. Still she managed to get a GPA of 6.99 and rank 7th in the class overall.

“It’s extremely difficult to make it in the top ten and there is a competitive side to it because everyone wants to try to get as high as possible and get a higher GPA then their fellow classmates,” says Hoppen.

“I want to go to Medical School and I knew it was going to be expensive so I wanted to get as many college classes out of the way with dual enrollment to save myself some money, ” says Hoppen. “I honestly didn’t know I would make it into the top ten till the beginning of senior year. My initial goal was to be in the top 20.”

Despite the challenges these students may have faced for having more classes, homework, and responsibilities academically they were able to manage their schedule and reach an accomplishment only ten students each year can do at Durant. These students have bright futures ahead of them and their extraordinary class rank is a helpful stepping stone for them on the path to their goals.