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School news
Chestatee High School students who placed at the Georgia Career Student Association's regional competition and staff advisers are, kneeling from left, Eilec Paniagua, Shanice Kennedy and English teacher Natalie White. Back row from left are adviser Mark Tomcho, students Alexis Shelton, Sharon Smith, Hannah Simmons, Danny Romero, Gustavo Gonzalez, and Dylan Bruce.

Chestatee High School students recently competed in the Georgia Career Student Association's regional competition at Chestnut Mountain Church in Oakwood. Eilec Paniagua won fourth place, floral design; Shanice Kennedy, third place, construction technology; Alexis Shelton, first place, hair design; Sharon Smith, fourth place, Power Point; Hannah Simmons, first place, first aid/CPR; Danny Romero, first place, collision repair; Gustavo Gonzalez, third place, automotive service; and Dylan Bruce, fifth place; woodworking. 

Megan Adams, a student at Habersham Central High School, took home the Best of Show award at the annual Piedmont College Juried High School Art Show.

Adams won the $100 first prize and is eligible for an $800 scholarship from Piedmont.

Emma Diedrick of Habersham Central won the third place prize of $50.

Kiki Thompson recently was named queen of Gainesville High School's 2009 basketball homecoming court. Other members of the court were Keke Harris, Lindsey Floyd and Mayra Sanchez. Other queen candidates were Angie Highsmith, Gracie McGarity, Taylor Ricketts and Emily Stephens.

Lanier Technical College student Joy Parson of Homer has been awarded an Exceptional Adult Georgian in Literacy Education honor.

Parson, 30, recently earned her GED through the adult education services offered by Lanier Tech at the Banks County Adult Learning Center. Sharon Clark, director of the Banks County Adult Learning Center in Homer, nominated Parson. Since obtaining here GED, Parson has enrolled at Gainesville State College.

Now in its 16th year, the EAGLE award honors adult learners for their outstanding participation and exceptional achievement in their local adult education programs.

Vince Binder of Gainesville, a member of the University of West Georgia's debate team, finished the season by placing second out of 137 teams at Northwestern University in Illinois.

Binder and teammate Jim Schultz of Jupiter are the first team in at least 25 years to reach the semifinals of both the Wake Forest and Northwestern tournaments, the two largest tournaments of the regular season, according to coach Michael Hester.

Local students James A. Williams of Braselton and Crystal Aileen Chatham of Buford have graduated from Excelsior College in Albany, N.Y.

The following local students graduated with honors from Gainesville State College on Dec. 13.

  • Summa cum laude: Sherry Anne Jarrard of Eastanollee and Susan Adams Simpson of Gainesville
  • Cum laude: Ricky C. Cleghorn of Gainesville
  • Honor graduates (highest grade-point average in associate degree area): Tramecya Monique Beale, Jeffrey L. Hendricks, Russell Tyler Martin and Jose Quinones, all of Gainesville; Adam Paul LeBlanc of Demorest; and Bethany Elaine Sanders of Flowery Branch.

Amelia G. Hammond of Gainesville was named to Coastal Carolina University's president's list for fall 2008.

Curt A. Slocum of Toccoa was named to the dean's list at the school, located in Conway, S.C.

Whitney Fagge and Heath Roper, both of Gainesville, were named to the dean's list for the fall 2008 semester at Reinhardt College in Waleska. To achieve this honor, students must maintain a 3.5 grade-point average with of a minimum of 12 semester credits, with no grade less than a B.

The following local students were named to the dean's list for the fall semester at Samford University in Birmingham, Ala. To qualify for the honor, a student must have earned a minimum 3.5 grade-point average out of a possible 4.0 while taking at least 12 credit hours of coursework.

Molly McCollum of Buford; Anna Brawner of Dawsonville; Heather Burke and Lauren Pilcher, both of Flowery Branch; Corinne Dyer and Elizabeth Presley, both of Gainesville; and Lillie Jackson of Oakwood.

The Gainesville High School Mock Trial Team competed at the University of Georgia Law School in Athens on Feb. 14. Kunal Lahiry and Christian Lott received Outstanding Attorney awards and Caroline Jackson and Leah Crawford received Outstanding Witness awards.

The following local students have been named to the fall 2008 dean's list at Valdosta State University in Valdosta. To achieve this honor, students must maintain a cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.0 and must have a semester grade-point average of at least 3.5 with at least nine hours of course work.

  • From Buford: Stephanie Boulware, Bryan Garris, Kyle O'Bryan, Amberly Russell, Melanie Terwoord, Cynthia Winham.
  • From Flowery Branch: Kasey Barber, Elizabeth Dunn, Samantha Nash.
  • From Gainesville: Candace Bennison, Branden Eichler, Amanda Meeks, Christopher Nish, Trung Vo, Ansley Williams and Abbey Williams
  • From Maysville: Brandi Jackson.
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