Girl power: Lady Truckers dominate top 5 NHS students

Cary Ashby • Updated May 23, 2018 at 11:54 PM

It’s girl power at Norwalk High School since all of the top-five academic students are young ladies.

Alaina Kelley is the Truckers’ valedictorian for the class of 2018 while Rachel Casselberry is the salutatorian. Rounding out the top five are Madeline Deidrick, Mara Jaworski and Brooke Fries.

The NHS class of 2018 will have its commencement ceremony at 3 p.m. Sunday.

Kelley, the daughter of Jeff and Jackie, said her fondest NHS memory will be Chris Higgins’ math classes.

“I will miss seeing my teachers and friends every day,” she said.

Her advice to underclassmen is to get involved and “don’t stress yourself out too much.”

Kelley’s achievements, activities and awards include: Volleyball, Key Club, Book Club, Teen Leadership Corps (TLC), Huron County YGC, principal’s list, Franklin B. Walter scholarship, 2017 honorable mention of all-Ohio volleyball and Senior Hall of Excellence. 

She is attending the University of Mount Union, where she will major in financial mathematics and play volleyball. 

Kelley isn’t sure what life will bring her in 10 years.

“But I would like to have a stable job doing what makes me happy and possibly starting a family,” she said.

Casselberry, the daughter of Ed and Cindy, said her fondest NHS memories are Higgins’ puns, TLC, “Monday morning blessings and Terrible Joke Tuesday with Mrs. Mason.”

“I will miss the teachers who truly care about me and my development as a student and a person. I will also miss seeing my friends every day,” she said.

Casselberry’s advice to underclassman includes being true to themselves and following their passion.

“Whether it be a club, sport or career, you can never go wrong doing something you love. Also, never start a new Netflix series right before finals because you won’t end up studying,” she said.

Her achievements, activities and awards include: Soccer, musical, swimming, student council (secretary), National Honor Society, Foreign Language Club, Safety Town volunteer, TLC, soccer (MVP, all-district honorable mention), principal’s list, honor roll, Norwalk Kiwanis student of the month, Norwalk Elks student of the month nominee and senior of the year.

While attending Liberty University, Casselberry will study accounting. She also plans on participating in the leadership and Eagle Scholars programs.

“I honestly have no idea where I’ll be in 10 years. If everything goes according to plan, I would like to start a family, have a stable job and continue to help others,” Casselberry said.

Deidrick, the daughter of Edwin Deidrick and Diane Deidrick, is ranked third.

Her fondest NHS memory is winning the first conference title in history for the girls’ soccer team.

“It made my senior season unforgettable, along with all of the wonderful memories and lasting friendships soccer has provided me,” Madeline Deidrick said. “I will miss all of the close relationships I have made with coaches, teachers, faculty and of course, friends.”

Deidrick’s recommendation to underclassmen is to go out for as many sports teams and participate in as many clubs as possible.

“Those are the times where you make the best memories and lasting relationships. I also advise them to take the CCP (College Credit Plus), AP (advanced placement) and honors classes; you’ll thank yourself for it later,” she said.

Her achievements, activities and awards include: Soccer (first-team, all-Sandusky Bay Conference; second-team all-district; midfield player of the year), softball (second team all-Northern Ohio League, offensive player of the year), swimming, orchestra, Foreign Language Club, Junior Leadership Project, National Honor Society and scholar athlete.

Deidrick will major in biochemistry at Heidelberg University, where she will continue playing soccer.

In 10 years, she sees herself having earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees, plus a doctorate.

“I want to one day own my own business, along with being a successful biochemist,” Deidrick said.

Ranked fourth in the class is Jaworski, the daughter of Steve Jaworski and Mary Beth Dennison.

Playing defense with her sister on the varsity soccer team is Mara Jaworski’s fondest memory as a Trucker.

“We were always so goofy together and she made my last two years a blast,” she said. “I will miss being so close to my younger sister Quinn.”

Jaworski’s advice to underclassmen is knowing there is more to high school than classes and sports.

“Don’t be afraid to be involved in clubs, volunteering, etc. Going outside your comfort zone to try new things is how you grow,” she said.

Her achievements, activities and awards include: Presidential scholarship at Eastern Michigan University (four-year, full ride), soccer (four-year letter-winner; first-team, all-NOL/SBC, first-team all-district, captain her senior year), Key Club, Art Club, TLC, Envirothon and Foreign Language Club.

Jaworski will major in international affairs at Eastern Michigan and minor in political science. 

In 10 years, she said she sees herself working as an ambassador in an embassy abroad.

Fries, the daughter of Mike and Dana, is ranked fifth. Her fondest Norwalk memory is traveling to Cambridge, England through TLC and the Geotrac Foundation to take finance and money responsibility classes.

“I will miss talking to my favorite teachers every day and miss the clubs I participated in,” Fries said.

Her advice to underclassmen is to “work hard early so you can relax later.” 

Her achievements, activities and awards include: Orchestra (president, most outstanding student award), Envirothon captain, student council representative, National Honor Society secretary and first-team NOL honors in tennis.

Like Jaworski, Fries also will attend Eastern Michigan, where she will have a double major in environmental science and biology.

In 10 years, Fries said she sees herself “in a position working to make an impact on the world.” 

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