Members of CCHS `11, lauded by Lions, recall year of ‘love, loss, excitement, and anticipation’
from Culver Community High School and their families to treat them to a catered meal and celebrate their accomplishments by way of the Club's annual senior awards banquet, held last Wednesday, April 27 in the CCHS cafeteria.
After a well-received round of songs from the school's jazz choir, accompanied by pianist Ann Bigley and directed by Diane Derrow, Student Council President Mark Maes took to the podium to review the past year, which he described as one of "love, loss, excitement, and anticipation."
Maes praised the freshman IGNITION program, in which upper classmen mentor incoming freshmen, with teachers assisting, to help the younger students segue into the school. He also recalled fondly the Student Council's remarkable success in raising funds for area Make-A-Wish youngsters, first a Marshall County boy for whom the Council raised over $3,000 last year, and this past year two ill Culver children, for whom the Council raised more than $10,000.
"We're very proud of that," said Maes. "We couldn't have done it without everyone's help."
He noted two representatives from the Make-A-Wish foundation came to a Student Council meeting recently and expressed their pride in the students, pointing out CCHS is in the top five among associations its size to raise that much money.
CCHS students also banded together to fund-raise for Culver's Relay for Life, Maes explained, adding the school choir opted to perform locally at Relay and forego the ISSMA competition downstate.
The 2010-2011 school year was certainly a watershed one for local sports, and Maes discussed several aspects of the school's successes, including the improved records of both the boys and girls soccer teams, the strong showing of the football team (with whom Jeremiah Harvey was named All-State), the 14-8 record of boys basketball team, the second best in CCHS history, and of course the historic season enjoyed by the sectional and regional championship girls basketball team, who set a new school record.
So, too, did Jeremiah Harvey, who helped put Culver on the map as its very first state champion wrestler. Maes explained Harvey has already broken discus and shotput records in track and field so far this spring.
Maes also noted freshman Caleb Dehning was the first Culver student to make it to state finals in speech team.
On a more sober note, Maes lamented the loss of late CCHS business teacher Mike Schwartz, whom he said "will be greatly missed by all of us," and whom he he said helped culivate a remarkably successful Business Professionals of America program at the school.
Maes was one of many award-winning students to speak with anticipation of the senior trip to Florida the following day as well.
Senior class President Jaclyn Bauer also addressed the audience and wistfully described her class' ascent from "the noisiest and most disruptive" freshmen class -- as described by some teachers, she said -- in a long time, but which went on to a number of notable accomplishments. She described the class' winning homecoming float the previous year, as well as the record-breaking Sports Spectacular win, the first for a junior class, the same year, among other victories. Discussing the girls basketball team's victories, Bauer lauded their directing their enthusiasm towards Jeremiah Harvey immediately following their last win, to celebrate his state title victory, praising "their selfless actions chanting Harvey's name after their victory."
CCHS counselor Brenda Sheldon, who conferred awards on the students, said Culver's Lions Club "is the essence of small town values," and described this year's winning students as "great kids."
Kaceigh Ahlenius, daughter of Peggy and Frank Ahlenius, winner of the Journalism award and the National Honor Society President (she plans to attend the University of Indianapolis to study Excersise Science and to be a therapy assistant.
Clarissa Baker, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Gene Baker, winner of the Art and Business awards (planning to attend Indiana University Bloomington).
Nicolette Banfield, daughter of Brett Banfield and the late Christina Diaz, BPA President (bound for Indiana/Purdue University, Indianapolis).
Jaclyn Bauer, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ted Bauer, Senior Class President given the Science award (Purdue University, West Lafayette)
Blake Bennett, son of Mr. and Mrs. Mike Bennett, recognized with the Spanish Award (Purdue University School of Technology).
Levi Bennett, son of Kathy McCarthy and Scott Bennett, given the Building Trades Award (Vincennes University)
Jacob Cavasos, son of Mr. and Mrs. Jonny Cavasos -- who was unable to attend the banquet -- recognized as the CAVS Club President (and headed to Ivy Tech, South Bend campus)
Teresa Daugharty, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Daugharty, recognized with the Yearbook award (Indiana University South Bend)
Cassandra Dehning, daughter of Rev. and Mrs. K.C. Dehning, recipient of the English and Math awards (Indiana University Bloomington)
Jessica Hominger, daughter of Robert Hominger, for the Choir award (Ivy Tech Community College)
Kirsten Lawmaster, daughter of Rhonda Ahlenius, Art Club President
Candice Lehman-Dilts, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joe Dilts, given the Drama award (Ivy Tech Community College)
Mark Maes, son of Mr. and Mrs. Mark Maes, Student Council President given the Drum Major award (Ball State University)
Colton Measels, son of Mr. and Mrs. Brian Hamman and the late Brad Measels, Journalism award (Purdue or Ball State Universities)
Brian Nelson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Sam Mahler, French Club President (Manchester College)
Jessica Pettit, daughter of Mrs. Hazel Manns, Spanish Club President (Purdue North Central)
Rene Porter, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Billy Porter, Family and Consumer Science Award (Arizona School of Massage Therapy)
Jeremiah Ray, son of Mr. and Mrs. Richard Bailey, Science Club President (University of Southern Indiana)
Alex Shaffer, son of Mr. and Mrs. Don Shaffer, given the Social Studies award (Manchester College)
Kyle VanDePutte, son of Mr. and Mrs. Ken VanDePutte, recognized with the Band award (IUSB).
Lion Don Freese also awarded the Club’s annual $1,000 scholarship to Cassandra Dehning, whom he described as a member of the National Honor Society and Academic Superbowl, BPA class officer, part of the Chorus, a Hobie Ambassador, member of the Student Council, soccer Rookie of the Year and Most Improved Player, track runner, and Teacher’s Assistant.
Freese, a substitute at the school, described Dehning’s taking the initiative to assist almost every student in her Spanish class recent, and described her as having “a lot of maturity and an excellent work ethic.”
Lions Club President Barbara Winters said the scholarship “represents a lot of pancake flipping” and added the Club is “proud to support (the schools) and all other youth activities in this community.”