The Johnstown-Monroe High School class of 2017 is leaving a legacy of high participation in both athletics and the arts, according to student leaders.
One hundred thirty-nine seniors are scheduled to graduate at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 27, at the Frank H. Chambers stadium behind the high school, 401 S. Oregon St. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be moved to the Donald E. Butt Memorial gymnasium.
Abby Schaffer, class valedictorian with a 4.609 grade-point average, said her classmates’ involvement in the arts is impeccable.
“Our band is huge,” she said. “The choir is phenomenal. Personally, I’m in band. I play trumpet.
“I think the participation in those activities and the fact these students excel at what they do (set us apart). Personally, I’ll miss being with the marching band the most.”
She said she would miss football Friday nights the most.
Another favorite memory, she said, is of the softball team advancing to the state semifinals in 2016.
“That was my junior year,” Schaffer said. “We had two outstanding pitchers. It’s the first we jelled as a team. It was amazing being with them. I was No. 4, playing second base.”
She plans to attend Ohio State University in August but hasn’t decided an area of study yet, she said.
Senior Sam Leber, who will finish second or third in the class, agrees that classmates’ involvement in numerous activities sets them apart.
“We’ve got band kids who are in basketball and other sports like that,” he said. “It’s cool to see people singing who also play football. They’re multitalented.”
Leber plays trombone for the Big Red Band, and he’s a member of the choir.
“I will never forget any of the football Friday nights,” he said. “Those were my favorite to go to, playing in the band. I’m sure it’s the same for the student section, football players and cheerleaders.”
He said another special memory is the senior trip to New York in late March.
“That’s something I’ll always remember,” Leber said. “It was fun to be with classmates outside of school.”
He plans to attend Ohio University to major in graphic design. He said he’s also interested in real estate.
Principal Derick Busenburg said the class of 2017 has been an absolute privilege to work with.
“In keeping with the Johnstown tradition, this year’s graduating class is an incredibly well-rounded group of students that manages to excel in their extracurricular activities as well as in the classroom,” he said. “I am very proud of this group of graduates, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for each of them.”