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Commencement set for Friday, May 26

Around 240 graduates from Pike County High School and Zebulon High School will accept their diplomas and step into the next phase of their lives during the commencement exercises set to start at 8 p.m. Friday, May 26 at the school’s stadium. ’We have great kids in Pike County. I am amazed every day at the actions of our students. Overall, they are kind, gracious and compassionate. They make me love coming to work every day,’ said PCHS principal Kevin Huffstetler who stepped into the role this school year. ‘This year has flown by, and the positives far outweigh the negatives. This is the first year that we have had interns placed at UGA Griffin, and their year ended with the university begging to continue. This year marks the graduation of the inaugural class of Pike County STEM students, which gave the students learning opportunities that few in the state receive. From fine arts to athletics, we had multiple region, area or competition champions. We also had our first individual state champion in track and field. Overall, this has been a really great school year.’ It will be the first graduation ceremony held in the new stadium and those attending are asked to not bring balloons, noise makers, alcohol, tobacco, vapes or weapons of any kind. All guests should enter the south gate of the stadium (adjacent to the field house).  Vehicles with handicap permits may access handicap parking via the south stadium car entrance. Since there are a limited number of handicap spaces, parking staff will assist others to the stadium by using golf carts. In case of inclement weather, graduation will be delayed in one hour increments. If the inclement weather continues, the ceremony will be delayed until 10 a.m. the following day. Speakers at the graduation ceremony will include Zoe Maher with a Moment of Reflection, Abigail Chasteen with the welcome message, Talisa Watts with the Introduction of Theme, Dylan Blohm with the Salutatorian Address, Peyton Lee with the Valedictorian Address and Courtney Bagwell with closing remarks. GET TO KNOW THE VALEDICTORIAN AND SALUTATORIAN: The 2017 Valedictorian for Pike County High School hopes to pursue a career where she can use her passion to help those whose rights have been denied. ’I plan to pursue a career in law as a Civil or Human Rights attorney. I want to use my passion for government and people in a way that can help those that have had their most basic rights suppressed or taken away,’ said PCHS Valedictorian Peyton Lee. The Salutatorian for the Class of 2017 is Dylan Blohm. He has been accepted into Georgia Tech and will major in biology. After earning his undergrad degree, he will attend medical school and plans to become a cardiologist. Valedictorian Peyton Lee graduated with a GPA of 4.51. She began dual enrollment at Gordon State College as a sophomore, splitting her day between high school and college. She took a total of 16 college courses and eight AP classes. In addition to her academic accomplishments, valedictorian Peyton Lee was also a member of the Varsity Volleyball team, president of the National Honors Society, member of the Beta Club, historian for the FFA, a member of the Academic Team, vice president of service for the Y Club, a member of the Chick-Fil-A Leader Academy and a part of the Student Council. She was also part of the Governor’s Honors Program last summer. She plans to attend the University of Georgia. ’I love service projects and I’ve participated in several during high school (several mission trips, study programs, working at food pantries) and I plan to work with Habitat for Humanity this summer,’ she said. ‘I also love to read and garden. I drink way too much coffee and spend a lot of time at SafeHouse in Griffin. I spend a lot of time with my friends and on Twitter.’ Peyton Lee is the daughter of Amanda and Brian Lee and the sister of Anna Grace Lee. Salutatorian Dylan Blohm graduated with a GPA of 4.4 and he took seven AP classes and six courses at Gordon State College. Blohm was part of the high school’s FFA, National Honors Society, Student Council, Cross Country, Principal Student Advisory Team, Chick-Fil-A Leadership Academy, as well as the STEM Program. ’I am most proud of two varying accomplishments during my high school years. I attended the Governor’s Honors Program (GHP) which is an intensive four-week summer program for the academically and artistically gifted as an Agricultural Science major and a Mathematics minor,’ said Blohm. ‘I was also one of seven STEM students to have a year-long internship at the University of Georgia, Griffin Campus. I worked alongside researchers on innovative projects. For my first semester, I interned with Dr. James Buck in the Department of Plant Pathology and I worked with Dr. Kirk Kealey in the Food Product Innovation and Commercialization Lab the second semester.’ He will receive the Zell Miller scholarship as well as scholarships from his church’s Knights of Columbus chapter and one from the Pike County Retired Educators. He will attend Georgia Tech in the fall to major in biology. ’After I receive my BS in Biology from Georgia Tech, I plan on attending Medical School to pursue a career in Cardiology. I enjoy teaching others, but I also feel that a career in medicine will allow me to improve the lives of many. With this being said, my overall career goal is to become an attending cardiologist at a major teaching hospital, so I can educate the next generations of future medical professionals,’ he said. He is the son of Sherry and Darren Blohm and the brother of Dustin Blohm.

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