NOTE: The following piece features a sampling of seniors who are branching out after graduation; it is by no means exhaustive.
As the school year is coming to a close, Yankton High School Seniors are working hard and staying on task with efforts to graduate and prepare themselves for their future after high school.
Many seniors have set their eyes on expanding their horizons and pursuing training and collegiate studies all across America.
Whether it is the Air Force, Yale, or the University of Hawaii at Manoa, the senior class of 2015 is branching out and working towards great achievements.
Alexa Bryan has chosen to pursue a Marine Biology Major at the University of Hawaii at Manoa this coming fall. Her inspiration to look into the University stemmed from her Sophomore Composition teacher Ms. Miner, who had studied at this university and shared her experiences of Hawaii with her students.
Hawaii will offer Bryan a change in venue as she continues her studies. She states that she is looking forward to the University of Hawaii for “the fact that it is a big city, and it has such a different culture. I think it would be fun to experience and learn about it.”
Bryan is a part of the Western Graduate Exchange which provides her with lower educational costs since Marine Biology is not offered in South Dakota, and she will ultimately complete her studies in the Marine Biology field after five years of schooling.
Johanna Lippert is also looking at a change of venue while attending college. She is going to pursue an international studies major with interests in pre-law at Baylor in Wako, Texas. Baylor is the oldest school in Texas and is well established, which is one of the reasons Lippert is excited to join the school. She says that “they have had a really good time in growth and advancements” which will offer her a host of opportunities as she advances her studies.
Besides the educational opportunities, Lippert is looking forward to the advantages that the large cities around her campus have to offer such as artistic events, concerts, and various recreation activities.
Patrick Binder, attending Yale in the fall, will be pursuing an ethics, politics, and economics degree.
While living on the east coast, he is looking forward to “being able to talk to people from all around the world and all around the nation” who may have similar interests.
At Yale there are numerous people who are interested in federal policy or have already been involved with it, and he is interested in getting to know various individuals from a variety of cultures and geographical locations.
Zach Lattea is pursuing a physics major from Columbia. Lattea commented that one of the reasons he chose Columbia was because of its high “focus on Math and Science.”
Lattea is looking forward to Colombia because of the cultural diversity which is not found as much in South Dakota as in other states with larger cities. This prestigious school will offer him a plethora of educational opportunities and cultural diversity.
Kess Houck will be training with the Army upon the completion of the 2015 academic year. She says that her mom had been a large influence in her interest in the military along with the tuition incentive provided by the Armed Forces.
Houck hopes to become a surgical technician while in the military, and after her active duty, she hopes to continue her education and ultimately become a surgeon.
Nick LaFave has committed to the Air Force and will begin his Basic Military Training at the start of the summer. Nicks states that he “always wanted to go into the Air Force because [he’s] fascinated by aircrafts and how they work as well has the very strong financial incentives and very low time commitment while in college and in the workforce.”
LaFave has chosen the Aerospace Propulsion 2A6X1 career while in the Air Force. Once he completes his eight months of training, he intends to attend SDSU and pursue a degree in mechanical engineering.
These individuals, along with the rest of the class of 2015, have worked hard and remained focused in the academic setting for the past four years.
No matter what each graduate plans to do following graduation, they all have experienced the strong academic work ethic instilled in the students at Yankton High School. This work ethic will afford every graduating senior the opportunity for success in future endeavors.