Words: Madison Baltimore
On April 24, 2019, seniors of African or African American heritage were honored for academic achievement and maintaining a 3.0 GPA or higher throughout their high school careers at the annual Celebration of Excellence.
This event took place at Long Reach High School, sponsored by the Council of Elders of the Black Community in Howard County in partnership with the Howard County Public School System.
The evening started with The Council of Elders walking in and being introduced, followed by the graduating seniors walking into the auditorium and taking their seats. The Elders then led the audience and participating students in singing the first verse of the black national anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”
Acknowledgements and other opening remarks were then conducted before the students lined up for the presentation of awards.
The principal and Black Student Achievement Program (BSAP) liaison from each school introduced the seniors, as well as where they plan to go for college, what they plan to major in, and any clubs they participated in. The night ended with congratulation speeches and closing remarks.
Aside from seniors being honored for their academic success, one male and one female senior from each high school, as well as Homewood and Cedar Lane, were nominated for either the Gloria Washington Wallace Award and the Sankofa Award, totaling in four seniors from each school. Centennial students Jordyn Blanken and Anong Teke were nominated for the Gloria Washington Wallace Award and Nicole Attram and Christopher Agnew were nominated for the Sankofa Award.
The Gloria Washington Wallace Award highlights seniors with the greatest academic improvement over the course of their high school careers while the Sankofa Award is awarded to the students who have shown high academic success as well as elements of leadership, citizenship, and service within their community.
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