Norwalk Reflector: Edison's Top 5 academic students encourage others to 'get involved'

Edison's Top 5 academic students encourage others to 'get involved'

Zoe Greszler • May 31, 2018 at 12:00 PM

MILAN — As the Edison High School Chargers celebrate another successful year, the students leading the way academically took time to reflect on what brought them this far.

The school’s top five graduating students are valedictorian Shea Smith, salutatorian Gavin Schaeffer, James Hill, Carlie Shover and Abbey Chenevey.

The Chargers’ commencement ceremony will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday in the high school gym.

For the valedictorian, the Firelands Challenge competitions held a special place in her heart.

Smith, the daughter of Kevin and Missy Smith, said her fondest memory of her high school career was winning the sixth consecutive Firelands Challenge Championship for Edison this year, setting a new competition record. Smith was part of the team that set the previous record of five consecutive wins the year before. 

Smith said she also valued the relationships she made along the way.

“I will miss the familiarity of Milan and being able to see my closest friends and teachers every day,” she said. 

Her advice to the underclassmen is to “dedicate yourself to your grades and extracurricular, but don’t forget to save time for yourself.

“It’s all about balance,” she said.

Smith’s top awards, achievements and activities include Firelands Challenge team captain, student council vice president, National Honor Society president, cheerleading captain, Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Ambassador, Berlin Heights Kiwanis student of the month and Spanish National Honor Society acting president.

After graduation, she plans to the University of Notre Dame to major in political sciences and Spanish. 

“In 10 years I hope to have completed law school in pursuit of a career in international law,” Smith said.

The salutatorian, son of Chris and Suzie Schaeffer, said he too will miss “seeing all my friends during our classes together.”

Gavin Schaeffer agreed with Smith, too, on his favorite memories, saying it was “being part of the school’s Firelands Challenge team’s sixth consecutive championship.

His accolades and activities include the Firelands Challenge championship, being named student of the month, Sandusky Bay Conference (SBC) team champions in track, cross country and basketball, as well as being a 4-H member. 

To achieve the same success, Schaeffer told his underclassmen to try their best and “don’t catch senioritis.”

Schaeffer plans to attend the University of Toledo this fall to major in civil engineering.

“In 10 years, I see myself with a career in construction management,” he said. 

Ranking at third in the class was James Hill, son of Frank and Mary Jane Hill.

Keeping with the theme of this year’s top performers, Hill said his fondest memory is of the Fireland’s Challenge championship title. 

He said he is most going to miss “the opportunity to grow with my friends and classmates over four years.”

His advice to the younger students is to “get involved.”

Hill took his own advice and was very involved throughout his high school years, which is clear from his list of achievements and activities, including the Firelands Challenge championship, SBC tennis champion, honorable mention All-Ohio Football Senior Excellence Award (United Soccer Coaches Association) and special mention for the All-Ohio Basketball award.

He plans to attend the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Mich. 

“In 10 years I see myself graduated from law school, working in a law firm,” he said. 

Carlie Shover placed fourth overall in the class. She is the daughter of Mike and Dawn. 

“My fondest high school memory is celebrating back-to-back SBC championships with my cross country team my junior and senior years,” she said. “Our team went on to qualify for the state meet, which was an amazing way to close my years of running cross country for the orange and blue.”

Shover said it’s hard to single out one aspect regarding things she’ll miss the most. 

“Many teachers and staff members at Edison High School have impacted my life in unexplainable ways,” she said. “I will miss visiting with them on a daily basis, but I know the lessons they have taught me will remain ingrained with me and play significant roles in shaping my future.”

Her activities, awards and achievements include student of the month, cross country, basketball and track and field, cross country four-year letter winner and team captain, taking first-team SBC in cross country, National Honor Society vice president (2017-2018), interact club’s communications officer (2016-2018), leading Edison Local Schools’ involvement with OHgo’s Project Happy, Stampede of Dreams volunteer and being a regional qualifier for the STEM competition (2015).

Shover will attend The Ohio State University, studying biology pre-medicine. 

“After undergrad (school), I plan on pursuing medical school with the goal of becoming a pediatrician,” she said. “In 10 years I see myself as a compassionate and hard-working health care provider, helping others within and outside of my career.”

The daughter of Adam and Stephanie Chenevey, Abbey Chenevey ranked fifth in her class.

She said she will most miss “all of the fond memories” she made as well as the “wonderful” teachers, coaches and people. Of those “fond memories,” though, it’s hard to pick a favorite, she said.

“I can’t pick just one, but all of the times spent running with my teammates during cross country season are my favorites,” she said. “The sport holds a special place in my heart.”

Shover encouraged her underclassmen to enjoy the time in high school while they can.

“Don’t wish time away,” she said. “Get involved in what you are passionate about and make the most of each moment.”

Shover’s awards, activities and achievements include being a four-year cross country runner and earning the most dedicated award for the sport in 2015,  interact club co-president, National Honor Society member, four-year Drama Club and International Thespian Society member, earning best technician in 2015 in these clubs, the French Honor Society, Big Brothers Big Sisters volunteer, student of the month,student of the quarter, National French Exam silver award and being a STWM state qualifier and award recipient. 

“In 10 years I will hopefully be a graduate of Gannon University with a master’s degree in occupational therapy, working in the field and using my life to help other people,” she said. 

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