May 18, 2017
PACS Names Valedictorian, Salutatorian, and Epistle Award Recipient
Prince Avenue Christian School has named the Class of 2017 Valedictorian, Salutatorian, and Epistle Award Recipient.
The 2017 Valedictorian is Chase Deatrick.
Chase is the son of John and Grace Deatrick and has attended PACS for six years. He has received the Wolverine Academic Gold Award for highest yearly average in 9th and 10th grade, is a member of the National Honors Society, and is a leader on the PACS Academic Team. Chase is STAR Student for the Class of 2017 and is a National Merit Finalist. Chase volunteers during the school year at South Athens Animal Clinic where he also works during the summer. Chase attends Bethlehem First United Methodist Church. He will be attending North Texas University on full scholarship and will major in Biology. Chase describes PACS as an exceptional place to learn. “The faculty and administration are uniquely gifted not only in their respective areas of oversight, but also in their strong encouragement of the student body. At no other institution could one find the sublime caliber of educators that help all students advance both as pupils and as children of God.”
The 2017 Salutatorian is Sammi Richt.
Sammi is the daughter of Craig and Jana Richt and has attended PACS for ten years. Sammi received the Gold Wolverine Academian award her sophomore year, the Bronze Wolverine Academian award her junior year, and the Silver Wolverine Academian award her senior year. This year and last, Sammi was honored by UGA's chapter of the Phi Kappa Phi Honors Society as PACS's top junior and senior (respectively). Sammi has been a member of both the National Honors Society and the Beta Club since her sophomore year.
Her first three years in high school, Sammi was heavily involved in PACS Performing Arts. She was the assistant stage manager for Godspell and Harvey. Sammi was in the ensembles of Les Miserables and The Addams Family and had speaking roles in A Midsummer Night's Dream and Pride and Prejudice. Sammi competed in Literary Meet in the Girls Trio and Rhetorical Essay competition and was also a member of the PACS improvisation team and National Thespian Society.
Sammi attends Young Harris First United Methodist Church. Last summer she traveled to Estonia on missions where she taught English lessons at a summer camp for children, helped lead group activities and games, and helped with the nightly worship. Sammi has also volunteered her time as a peer note-taker at PACS. Sammi plans to go to the University of Georgia as an English major with a focus in creative writing.
Sammi is especially grateful for the individualized education she received at PACS. “Because the classes are smaller, teachers can devote more time to helping each of their students.” Sammi also appreciates the spiritual growth she has experienced at PACS. “Learning through a Christian worldview has helped me strengthen my faith. During my time at Prince, many Christ-like teachers and students have helped me through difficult situations, and I have grown academically, personally, and spiritually because of the influence of these people.”
The 2017 Epistle Award recipient is Jared Gilstrap.
The Epistle Award is given annually to the graduating senior who, in the opinion of the faculty, best represents what PACS values more than anything else – a Christ-like spirit that manifests itself in a desire to grow in the Lord and serve others for the glory of God.
Jared is the son of Jim and Sonya Gilstrap and has attended PACS for 13 years. Jared’s notable achievements include the Headmaster's Honor Roll, Young Theologian Award, and the Patrick S. Gilmer Concert Band Award. During his high school career, Jared has been active in Advanced Band, Jazz Band, Interact Club, Beta Club, and the National Honor Society.
Jared attends Colbert First Baptist Church where he is active in Unashamed Student Ministries. Jared has also contributed his time and efforts as a mentor in the PACS Barnabas Program as well as attending Fuge Camps in the summer in which he participates in community service while undergoing training in witnessing to others.
After graduation, Jared plans to attend the University of Georgia. He explains that PACS has uniquely prepared him for his future endeavors. “Throughout my time at this school, I have been raised to follow the right path. I am deeply thankful for being raised in an environment that puts Christ at the center. This viewpoint of Christ before all else has aided me greatly in preparing for the future.”
Jared eagerly encourages younger students with the scripture in I Chronicles 28:20. “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.”
Jared explains, “As you grow older, a lot of things change and more responsibilities will find themselves on your shoulders. But through all of the turmoil and the change, the Lord will stand alongside you if you keep yourself dependent upon Him. Regardless of what those around you may say or do, always follow and honor God, and He will take you to places that you would never dream.”
Chase Deatrick – Valedictorian, Jared Gilstrap – Espistle Award, and Sammi Richt – Salutatorian