AUSTIN — Fifteen students graduated from Austin Area School during its 120th Annual Commencement on Friday, May 31.
Father James Campbell gave the invocation and benediction.
Class Salutatorian, Garrett Rees, gave a speech entitled “Be The Change” followed by Class Valedictorian Noah Leightley who’s speech was “Sculpting Our Future.”
Guest Speaker was Judd Pitman; Special Consultant to the Secretary of Education for STEM.
Presentation of Awards was given by Principal Dan Eskesen followed by remarks to the graduating class by Superintendent Kimberly Rees.
Rees presented the Class of 2019 and diplomas were presented by Board of Education President Darwin Rees along with past and present Board Members Joseph Burgett, Nancy Glover, Clint Rees and Michelle Valenti.
Farewell remarks were given by Class President Cerissa Glover.
Class colors were plum and silver with dark purple hydrangea as class flower. The Class song was “Tattoos on this Town” by Jason Aldean. Taylor Brewer and Caden Rees served as flower girl and boy.
Judy Sasala was the accompanist.
Graduating Seniors: Blake Burgett, Thomas Crosby, Kiera Dynda, Trent Fowler, Kevin Gentzel, Cerissa Glover, Dempsy Glover, Elias Kiser, Julie Latimore, Noah Leightley, Dalina Lindsley, Miles Moate, Garrett Rees, Mason Valenti and Angeline Watson.
The following awards were presented:
Austin VFW Post 7810
1st Place Scholastic Recipient: Noah Leightley
2nd Place Scholastic Recipient: Garrett Rees
Boy Athlete Recipient: Blake Burgett
In Recognition of joining an armed force Recipient: Thomas Crosby
VFW Ladies Aux Post 7810
First Place English Recipient: Noah Leightley
Girl Athlete Recipient: Cerissa Glover
Emporium Specialties Company
1st Place Computer Science Recipient: Noah Leightley
P.T.O. Award in honor of Mr. Hurt
First Place Social Studies Recipient: Miles Moate
Austin Volunteer Fire Department Awards
Outstanding Artistic Ability Recipient: Kiera Dynda
Outstanding Writing Ability Recipient: Trent Fowler
Get together club
1st Place Math & Science Recipient: Noah Leightley
Science department — Mrs. Brewer
2nd Place Math & Science Recipient: Garrett Rees
Larry Leightley Memorial Award
To The Most Improved Senior Student Recipient: Mason Valenti
In memory of Douglas Perry
Given by his parents Gail Knauer and Paul Perry to a top graduate in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Recipient: Noah Leightley
In memory of Jason Glover
Presented by his daughter Cerissa Glover to a senior who is mechanically gifted. Recipient: Kevin Gentzel
Perry’s Sport Shop
Vocational Student — 1st Place Scholastic recipient: Angeline Watson
“Community and School Service Award” Recipient: Mason Valenti
Austin Area Education Association Award
Most conscientious attitude toward Austin High School throughout their school years. Recipient: Garrett Rees
East Fork Sportsmen’s Club Award
Environmental and Conservation Education Awards
Recipients: Noah Leightley, Miles Moate
Austin Pride Committee
To a senior student who demonstrates qualities of leadership which would be an asset to organizations such as “Austin Pride Committee.”
Recipients: Noah Leightley, Miles Moate
Community Blood Bank
In recognition for being Gallon Blood donors during their high school years:
Recipients: Cerissa Glover, Noah Leightley, Garrett Rees
Marie Brisbois Nuschkee Essay Award
Given to the writer of the most outstanding essay on a selected topic under the subject: “The Early Local History of Potter County and Its People.” Can be awarded to a junior or senior. Recipient: Mason Valenti
Knights of Columbus
Knights of Columbus $400 recipient: Noah Leightley
Given to a student by Statewide Tax Recovery with the best accumulative attendance record 9th through 12th. Recipient: Trent Fowler
The American Chemical Society, Penn-York Section presents this Certificate of Outstanding Achievement to a student of Austin Area High School in recognition of Superior Performance in Chemistry. Recipient: Noah Leightley
Austin-Costella Sportsmen Club
$500 scholarship: Students are asked to write an essay on one of the following subjects: 2nd Amendment; Fishing or Hunting. This Year’s Recipient: Kevin Gentzel
E.O. Austin Historical Society
A $300 scholarship to a senior student who demonstrates strong civic traits and will use those traits at college. This year there are two recipients: Noah Leightley and Miles Moate
Brock Lamont Hooftallen Memorial Scholarship
$500 scholarship: Students are asked to write an essay “Dare You to Make a Difference.” This year’s recipient of the $500.00 scholarship is: Blake Burgett
Father Weibel Memorail Scholarship
A $482.50 Scholarship Recipient: Mason Valenti
Anonymous donation of $1,000
Given to a senior students who has the following traits: hard worker, conscientious, honest, good citizen, makes the best effort as their talent allows, participates in extracurricular activities and most of all displays integrity. Recipient: Mason Valenti
Charles McCloskey Scholarship
Considerations: academic performance, and character of the applicant – Four scholarships are awarded this year, in the amount of $750 each. This year’s recipients are Trent Fowler, Noah Leightley, Miles Moate and Mason Valenti.
Gerald F. Duffee, Sr. Scholarship
Presented by his daughter Colleen Frank to Miles Moate.
Mary Ann Walter Scholarship
The Mary Ann Walter Scholarship was established to help students in the Potter County Schools with college expenses. Students must be enrolled in college for Business and/or Art Education and meet the qualifications set by the Committee. One scholarship was awarded to an Austin Student in the amount of $1,700 Recipients: Miles Moate
Austin Foundation Scholarship
$3,500.00 scholarship distributed over four years to Mason Valenti
The following students received scholarships from their respective schools:
Noah Leightley is attending Rochester Institute of Technology; $15, 000 per year Presidential Scholarship, $18,000 per year RIT Grant.
Miles Moate is attending Penn State Altoona; $4,000 Agnes Sopcak Memorial Scholarship. He was accepted into the Pathway to Success Summer Program at Penn State Altoona with a $1,500 tuition scholarship for the first summer and $3,000 the second summer.
Mason Valenti is attending Lock Haven University; he received a $1,000 scholarship from Lock Haven