Archived Story

Edwards edges others for top average at EBS

Published 8:55pm Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Desharte Edwards, 18, was named Edward Bell School’s valedictorian for the class of 2011, and Precious Pearson and Shakendria Williams were named salutatorians.

The grade point average of each girl was so close to the other, that guidance counselor Frances Blackburn said they had to choose based on the actual decimal grade.

Edwards, who averages a 4.0 grade point average, will graduate with an advanced diploma. She has participated in several extracurricular activities during her high school career.

She is a member of the Beta Club and Scholar’s Bowl and participated in Junior Leadership Lake Martin.

From eighth to 12th grade, Edwards has played basketball and softball for EBS. She was also a cheerleader for three years.

Aside from school, Edwards said she likes to volunteer at the public library and Harvest Thrift Store in Opelika.

Edwards is the daughter of Glenn and Jennifer Edwards and will be attending Southern Union State Community College on a presidential scholarship, which pays for full tuition and fees.

She said she hopes to transfer to Troy University or an out-of-state institution to get her degree in health care or nursing.

Edwards said she feels honored to represent her graduating class by just doing what she’s always tried to do, succeed in school.

“To me it means more this year because they’re saying the school is going to be closed,” Edwards said. “So I get to be the last valedictorian of my school, ever, so that means a lot and adds to the title.”

Pearson, who averages a 4.0 GPA, will graduate with an advanced diploma and has participated in many extracurricular activities.

She is a member of Scholar’s Bowl, Beta Club, Junior Leadership Lake Martin, Leadership in Action Network, and she is the editor of the school newspaper.

Aside from school, Pearson works at an after school tutoring program called Twenty-first Century and also volunteers at the public library.

She said she has also played the piano for four years.

Pearson is the daughter of Sonja Pearson and Joseph Evans and will be attending Alabama A&M University of Huntsville on a Department of Arts and Sciences scholarship, which pays $5,000 a semester and a book allowance.

She said she is still undecided, but thinks she wants to get her degree in mathematics.

“It’s good to see all of your hard work pay off,” Pearson said. “My family encouraged me to do the best I can, and I think having the drive to be successful helped me to excel.”

Williams, who averages a 4.0 GPA, will graduate with an advanced diploma. She has participated in many extracurricular activities such as playing softball and cheerleading for EBS.

She is also a member of Beta Club and Scholar’s Bowl.

Aside from school she said she volunteers at the local library.

Williams is the daughter of Robert Williams and Lasonja Billingsley and will be attending Southern Union State Community College in Wadley on a presidential scholarship, which pays for full tuition and fees.

She said she feels good to be at the top, but she couldn’t have gotten there without the support of her family.

“I came here in the eighth grade and it wasn’t hard,” Williams said. “But you’ve got to keep up with the rest of the class and I’m just very honored to be salutatorian.”

Overall, Blackburn said she is proud of all three girls and their accomplishments.

“These three girls have worked for four years to maintain an A average,” Blackburn said. “They are all motivated to make a positive difference in society.”

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