▪ Students from Bluegrass Baptist Christian Academy in Georgetown competed April 12-14 in the 39th annual American Association of Christian Schools National Competition, held at Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C.
Tenth-grader Lauren Graham and her ninth-grade sister, Alyssa Graham, formed a debate team that defeated teams from three other states before falling by one point to a team of two seniors from a Michigan school.
More than 1,800 students and sponsors from 29 states and 200 Christian high schools participated in the competition after capturing top honors in their state contests. Students competed in 76 categories in the five basic areas of Bible, music, speech, art and academics.
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▪ The Craft Academy for Excellence in Science and Mathematics at Morehead State University has selected 60 sophomores for the Class of 2018, including Caroline O’Neil of Lafayette High School, Christian Trowel of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, and Sam McInteer of STEAM Academy. They were chosen based on ACT and SAT scores, academic grades, interest in advanced STEM careers, responses to essay questions, interviews by a selection committee, and recommendations from teachers and others.
▪ The University of Kentucky Gaines Center for Humanities has selected 12 undergraduates as new scholars for the university’s Gaines Fellowship Program for the 2016-17 and 2017-18 academic years. Gaines fellowships recognize outstanding academic performance, a demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, an interest in public issues and a desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities.
Gaines fellowships are awarded for the tenure of a student’s junior and senior years, or for the last two years of a five-year program.
UK’s 12 new Gaines Fellows are: Ben Childress, of Lexington, majoring in pre-economics and political science; Evelyn Hudson, of Benton, majoring in philosophy and writing, rhetoric and digital studies; Jacob Kaylor, of Hickory, N.C., majoring in philosophy and classics; John Paul Larson, of Tinley Park, Ill., majoring in English; Josiah Liew Liq Jong, of Rawang, Malaysia, majoring in agricultural biotechnology and sustainable agriculture; Natalie Malone, of Smiths Grove, majoring in psychology; Aaron Mueller, of Louisville, majoring in linguistics and computer science; Aya Omar, of Crestwood, majoring in biology and animal sciences; Damien Phillips, of Lexington, majoring in English; Hayla Ragland, of LaGrange, majoring in art studio and psychology; Katherine Stockham, of Somerset, majoring in biology; and Connor VanMeter, of Lexington, majoring in agricultural biotechnology and computer science.
▪ The debate team from Henry Clay High School and the speech team from SCAPA at Bluegrass have repeated as state champions in this spring’s Kentucky High School Speech League tournaments. For SCAPA, it was the 19th consecutive state title; it was Henry Clay’s third in a row.
Overall in debate: Henry Clay High School, state champion; Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, fourth place
Varsity sweepstakes: Henry Clay, first; Dunbar, sixth
Novice sweepstakes: Henry Clay, first; Dunbar, tied for sixth; Lafayette, tied for 10th
Congress sweepstakes: Dunbar, runner-up; Henry Clay, ninth
Top results from Henry Clay:
Varsity Policy team: Hunter Rice and Noah Fischer, champions
Novice Policy team: Lena Ilagen and Xander Quinio, champions; Anne Douglas Chambers and Griffin Coates, runners-up
Varsity Public Forum team: Henry Walther and Spencer Parsons, runners-up
Novice Public Forum team: Sam Clark and Will Merritt, runners-up
Varsity Lincoln-Douglas Debate: Emmet Allen, runner-up
Congressional Debate: Faith LoPiccolo, tied for 10th
Speaker Award/Varsity Policy Debate: Noah Fischer, first place; Hunter Rice, second; Rachael Gilbert, fifth
Speaker Award/Novice Policy: Anne Douglas Chambers, first place; Breland Finch, second; Yesmina Townsley, third; Griffin Coates, fourth; Lena Ilagen and Xander Quinio, tied for fifth
Speaker Award/Varsity Public Forum: Henry Walther, first place; Spencer Parsons, second; Shelby Amato, fifth; Anya Slepyan, seventh; Josh Ehl, eighth; Evan Hays, 10th
Speaker Award/Novice Public Forum: Will Merritt, first place; Sam Clark, second; Valerie Pallos, seventh; Taylor Smith, eighth
Speaker Award/Varsity Lincoln-Douglas: Emmet Allen, fourth; Gabriella Britt, eighth
Speaker Award/Novice Lincoln-Douglas: Zach Sippy, fourth; Ella Franklin, eighth; Young Kyung Kim, ninth
Congressional Debate: Dasha Kolyaskina, runner-up
Overall in speech: Henry Clay, fourth place; Dunbar, sixth; Lafayette, tied for 10th
Top results from Henry Clay
Extemporaneous: Amir Abou-Jaoude, champion
Oratory: Amir Abou-Jaoude, champion
Impromptu: Amir Abou-Jaoude, champion; Rachael Gilbert, fourth
Duo Interpretation: Emma Bellomy and Cooper Boss, fifth
Improvisational Duo: Emma Bellomy and Faith LoPiccolo, fifth
Storytellers: Maddie Butler, sixth
Oratorical Declamation: Sahar Mohammadzadeh, champion
Poetry: Sahar Mohammadzadeh, runner-up
Oratory: Lucy Yang, fifth; Zainab Kahloon, sixth
Impromptu: Leila Abou-Jaoude, third
Radio Broadcasting: Leila Abou-Jaoude, fourth
Extemporaneous: Leila Abou-Jaoude, fourth
Humorous Interpretation: Jarod Frank, fifth
Overall in speech: State champion, SCAPA at Bluegrass
Top results from SCAPA
Storytelling: Tommy Flanigan, champion
Improvisational Duo: Josh Cunningham and Tommy Flanigan, champions
Extemporaneous Speaking: Nicholas Skidmore, champion; Sarah Grace Sajadi, third
Impromptu: Nicholas Skidmore, runner-up
Original Oratory: Sophia Li, runner-up; Niki Maleki, fourth
Prose: Helena Schatzki, third
Oratorical Declamation: Angie Xiao, third; Niki Maleki, fifth; Yelena Bagdasaryan, sixth
Duo Acting: Daniel Baesler and Ellie Phillips, fourth; Jacob Ernst and Tommy Flanigan, fifth
Humorous/Dramatic Interpretation: Helena Schatzki, fifth
Poetry: Maren Bylund, sixth
Radio Broadcasting: Sammi Briggs, fifth; Nicholas Skidmore, sixth
Solo Acting: Josh Cunningham, fifth; Deya Andreev, sixth
▪ Lexington area schools took home four state team championship titles out of five possible sections, and three individual championships in the state chess championships. Rosa Parks Elementary claimed its third consecutive title in both the K-1 and in K-3 sections, for its sixth state championship overall. Meadowthorpe Elementary won its third consecutive K-5 title and eighth state championship overall, and Winburn Middle School broke Louisville’s four-year hold on the middle school championship by taking home the K-8 section this year.
On March 12 in Louisville, the state individual tournament was hosted by the Kentucky Chess Association. Kindergartner Caleb Marshal of Lexington Latin repeated as state champion in K-1, Andrew Zhang of Meadowthorpe Elementary won the championship in K-3, and his brother Conner Zhang (also of Meadowthorpe) repeated as K-5 state champion.
▪ Seven Kentucky universities competed at the fourth annual Alltech Innovation Competition on April 9 at Bluegrass Community and Technical College’s Newtown Pike campus. Morehead State University’s undergraduate team and University of Louisville’s graduate team took home the top prizes of $10,000 each, the same amount with which Pearse Lyons founded Alltech, which is now worth more than $2 billion.
MSU presented a joint effort between its agriculture and business students, with a team including Jordan Bach, Tessa Combs, Adam Lyon, Dalton Shepherd and advisers Amy Poston Lentz and Janet Ratliff. The group won first place in the undergraduate category with its company Pollination Solutions. The venture features The Pollinizer, a drone attachment designed to combat the effects of bee colony collapse by mimicking the natural process of honey bee pollination throughout an orchard. This man-made alternative to bee pollination addresses the threat of the declining bee population to fruit production in Kentucky.
The University of Louisville team, including students Tedd Pollard, Aaron Searcy, Sanjay Singh and adviser Suzanne Bergmeister, won in the graduate category with its company KYchen, a cooking oil management solutions business that reduces fresh oil consumption, increases consistency in food preparation and increases productivity in a safe, clean, efficient and eco-friendly way. The comprehensive services and solutions, including Whirl, a patent-protected oil filtration and transport device, are suitable for the 70 percent of the 1.2 million U.S. restaurants that fry foods.
▪ The UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment has inducted five new members to its Hall of Distinguished Alumni. This year’s recipients — an entrepreneur, a NASA nutritionist, a Wall Street executive, a family and consumer scientist and an animal scientist — showcase the career options available to alumni.
Inductees are Robert Hall Jr. of Georgetown, owner of Lexington-based Farmers Feed Mill; Barbara Landrum Rice of Bellaire, Tex., (a native of Simpson County) who works with astronauts as a research dietitian at the Johnson Space Center; Bonnie O. Tanner of Harrodsburg, co-founder of the Kentucky Women in Agriculture organization; Myra Leigh Tobin, of New York (a native of Harned), former president of the UK Alumni Association and member of the UK board of trustees who supported UK HealthCare with the construction of the Myra Leigh Tobin Chapel in the UK hospital; and the late James D. Kemp, a native of Pickett, who spent nearly 40 years teaching and advising undergraduate and graduate students in Department of Animal and Food Sciences at UK.
▪ Music for All has selected Claire Howell, a sophomore at Lafayette High School, to participate in the Bands of America Honor Band in the 2017 Tournament of Roses Parade. Claire was chosen from hundreds of applicants for this 300-piece national ensemble of winds, percussion and a flag and dance team. Her band director is Chuck Smith, and color guard instructor is Emily Duncan.
As a member of the color guard, Claire will spend a week in southern California for rehearsals, performances at the Tournament of Roses Bandfest and at Disneyland, and will make a featured appearance in the Jan. 2 parade.
▪ Bryan Station High School is home to two of the three honorees in the 6th District’s 2016 Congressional Art Competition. Winner of the Constituent’s Choice award was senior Andrew Cottle, whose Day in the Park received more Facebook “likes” than any submission other than the overall winner. His work will be displayed for the next year in Rep. Andy Barr’s Washington office. In addition, Barr’s team selected junior Myles Garr’s entry Kentucky Proud for the Staff Choice award.
The 6th District’s overall winner, Where My Story Begins out of Nicholas County, will be displayed in the Capitol for a year along with top artwork from other congressional districts.
▪ Five groups from Fayette County Public Schools were among more than 200 middle and high schools attending the Kentucky United Nations Assembly conferences in Louisville in early March. The three-day experiential learning program has students participate in simulated international diplomacy. Students also serve as officers, run as candidates and earn merit-based awards.
Outstanding Statesmanship: Henry Clay High School and Winburn Middle School
Outstanding Speakers: Evan Hayes, Henry Clay; Ashley Barnett, Lafayette; and Cubaka Mutajonjura, Tates Creek High
Outstanding Ambassadors: Abby Raines, Henry Clay; Ashley Barnett, Lafayette; and Noah Rice, Bryan Station High
Delegations of Excellence: Bryan Station High, Henry Clay, Lafayette and Tates Creek High
Outstanding Media Corps Member: Rocco Wrentmore, Winburn
▪ Fayette County Public Schools will offer the STARTALK Chinese Language Program again this summer for students in grades K-5 to practice the language and learn more about Chinese culture. Applicants must be studying Chinese in a Fayette County Public Schools classroom; the two-week program is not for beginners.
The free summer classes will provide Chinese cultural experiences and hands-on activities as students engage in conversation, interpretive listening, and presentational speaking. The program will run from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays June 13-24 at Tates Creek Middle School, with the student showcase at 1 p.m. June 24. A light snack and a school lunch will be provided daily; bus transportation will not be available. For questions, call 859-381-4329. Enroll online at Webapps.fcps.net/startalk/Enroll.asp.
▪ Tonita Goodwin has been named assistant director of the Kentucky Innovation Network at Richmond, based at Eastern Kentucky University. For the past three years, Goodwin has been the executive director of the Richmond Industrial Development Corp. Previously, she sold real estate in Madison County and Central Kentucky. Goodwin serves on the board of directors for the Kentucky Association for Economic Development and was a gubernatorial appointee to the Kentucky Chemical Demilitarization Citizens’ Advisory Commission and Chemical Destruction Community Advisory Board.