The Class of 2017May 09, 2017
Madelyn Haden – Moore High School
Senior Madelyn Haden from Moore High School has always done well in school, and she has the resume to prove it. With a list of clubs and organizations as long as my arm, it is no surprise that Haden was granted almost $40,000 in scholarships and grants to attend Emory University in Georgia in the fall. After earning a 33 on the ACT and a 1360 on the SAT, Haden had some choices to make for college, and that’s when she made the decision to go to Emory.
Haden will be studying Global Health and Microbiology at Emory and hopes to someday work with the International Red Cross as a doctor or with the Center for Disease Control as a virologist. Haden wants to work with people who are in refugee camps.
“There is not enough research being done about what happens when you put people in refugee camps,” explained Haden. “These people are being put into these camps without enough water or proper shelter, and no one is looking at how disease and viruses are being spread in these communities.”
Haden has always been interested in science, but after placing third in state in Science Seminar her sophomore year, the program lost its funding.
“After my sophomore year at Moore, Science Seminar lost its funding. The year before, my partner and I earned third place in state with our research on blue green algae in Lake Thunderbird. We learned that calcium carbonate can kill it and keep it from reproducing. During our junior year, we had planned to conduct research on a bigger scale when the program was cut.”
But Science Seminar is just one of many programs and activities that Haden belongs to. She was also on the leadership committee in Key Club, president of the Safe and Sound Program and vice-president of the National Art Honor Society. She is in National Honor Society, the National Society for High School Scholars, the National Junior Classical League and the Academic Team. Haden is also active in sports as part of her Varsity Track and Field Team and the Bowling Team. She is also a founding leader for Fellowship of Christian Athletes and is a member of The Jungle at Moore. She has taught for four years at Highland Baptist Church, is a Fall’s Creek Youth and Children’s sponsor and counselor, and a VBS mascot, teacher and worship assistant.
In addition to earning a grant from Emory, Haden won the Moore Alumni Scholarship, was an Academic All-State and is a semi-finalist for the Presidential Scholar Award (given to the top 800 students in the nation). She was also just recently nominated as the South Oklahoma City Student of the Year. Haden will graduate third in her class and has received recognition as Student of the Month, Pre-AP Chemistry Outstanding Student, AP Biology Top Student, Outstanding Science Student, 2016 Graduation Reader and the Artist Showcase Recipient.
When asked about her most influential teacher, Haden didn’t hesitate, “Ms. Janet Roach. She taught me how to express my opinions in an eloquent way that would be more accessible to my audience, both in writing and in speech!”
Haden hopes someday that her education will afford her the opportunity to be a medical missionary in Kenya, Southeast Asia or the Middle East.
“We have the obligation to go from human to human where people don’t have anything,” explained Haden. “It’s an ethical responsibility that we all have.”
Roman Wright - Westmoore High School
Senior Roman Wright from Westmoore High School is no ordinary student. It’s not enough that she scored a 35 on her ACT, or that she is an All-State actor or first alternate to nationals in Speech and Debate. It’s not enough that she is an officer in the National Honor Society and a senator in Student Council. Wright was also granted a full tuition scholarship to Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee to study nursing.
“The nursing program at OBA is incredible!” explained Wright. “But I still wasn’t sure if that’s where I wanted to go to school. So, I also visited Baylor University, and that’s when I realized that no matter where I went, nothing would compare to OBU.”
Wright came to Westmoore via private school her sophomore year.
“I came from a private Christian school where I had nine people in my class” said Wright. “It was hard to come to Westmoore initially, but I have adjusted, and I’m so glad I made the change.”
Wright credits Westmoore for giving her the self-esteem she needed to succeed.
“Being in a private school that small, you don’t have as much of an opportunity to meet people, and you get stuck in your comfort zone. Being at Westmoore made me a lot more confident to actually step-out, and that boosted my self-esteem.”
One of Wright’s best memories at Westmoore was with the drama program.
“I went to a private school until my sophomore year, so when I came to Westmoore, I learned that getting recognized as an All-State actor is actually a thing! So, the best memory I have is at one act play contest at state this year. When I heard my name called to be an All-State actor, that was just an incredible experience.”
Wright also qualified for state in humorous duet acting and dramatic interpretation acting, placing fourth in dramatic interpretation at state in Speech and Debate. She also won first alternate to nationals in dramatic interpretation.
When Wright first started at Westmoore as a sophomore, she met a teacher that would forever change her life.
“Deanne Pence is the teacher who made the most difference for me at Westmoore,” explained Wright. “And I say this without hesitation. I came in my sophomore year and I had to be in a lot of freshmen classes to catch up. Ms. Pence and I had a connection from the start. She was my biology teacher and my volleyball coach. She is always encouraging me. She’s an exceptional teacher and coach. She is really good at making personal relationships, and she is very good at making you feel valued.”
Senior principal Billy Langford said that Wright is one of their most well-rounded students, “She’s had the total experience here at Westmoore, both academically and with extra-curricular activities. She represents Westmoore every day in very high standards. We’re lucky to have her here.”
But Wright still has some worries about starting college in the fall, “My main concern is that I will jump in head first and overwhelm myself. Nursing is not an easy major and I’m also doing the honors program, so I’m worried that I’ll take on more than I can handle. And I’m already notorious for not saying no.”
But Wright has a great support system. Between her parents and her teachers and coaches at Westmoore, she is on the right track.
“I am resistant to change, so stepping out of that bubble is scary.”
With Wright’s track record, she has nothing to worry about.
Quindon Lewis – Southmoore High School
Southmoore senior Quindon Lewis is a talented young man. He has earned a full scholarship to play football at Memphis State in the fall. He’s a great motivator. He’s well-liked by his teachers and peers. He has a great outlook on life. He set a goal for himself early on in life and achieved it. But one more thing is for certain. Lewis appreciates the people who helped him become who he is today.
Lewis lives in a house with strong women, and his mom Latrisha Lewis has always been in his corner.
“My mom is pretty crazy!” explained Lewis. “She’s more competitive than I am, and she is the loudest at all of the games!”
And his sister makes sure to keep Lewis in line as well, “She’s the craziest one! She’ll try to tell me what to do with girls and things!”
And senior principal Julia Black has been supporting Lewis from the beginning, “When Quindon was in elementary school, he and his friends would come to the games, and he would beg to come on the field. If we were winning and there were not many people on the sidelines, I would sometimes open the gate and let them in. Even at that age, Quindon used to say, ‘I’m going to be playing one day Ms. Black.’”
And at the last home game of this season, Lewis did not forget Ms. Black.
“He brought me the game ball,” Black said, trying to hold back the tears.
Lewis explained, “Ms. Black has done wonders for me. When I was a freshman, I didn’t even know how hard she was working behind the scenes to help me. She helped me so much. She’s like my second mom.”
Things didn’t always come easy for Lewis. The NCAA has requirements to earn a scholarship, including a certain GPA, and Lewis was slacking a bit.
“Between my sophomore and junior year, Ms. Black set me down and explained, ‘You’re either going to do this or football will be out the window.’ She got me on the right track. There would be times I would tell her, ‘I’m not feeling class today Ms. Black!’ And she would walk me all the way to class! But it’s not just me. It’s every kid. She touches every kid’s life, whether they’re in sports or not. She never turns away anyone. She loves her job.”
When asked why he chose Memphis State for college, Lewis had a simple response.
“It was the family environment,” said Lewis. “It’s hard to find real people out there. Every college recruiter will say the same thing, so you have to find out who is real and who is just telling you stuff. Memphis State just stayed consistent throughout the recruiting process starting my freshmen year.”
When Lewis talks about football, it’s clear that he loves the game.
“Football teaches you a lot about life. You go through hard times in football, and you learn to just push through it. And when you go through certain things in life, football prepares you for what you need to do to push through it.”