By: Erica Fatima
M-J-J ALL DAY! From achievements in the arts, academics, athletics and community service the M.H. Jackson Jaguars accomplishments are amazing! Blazing a historical trail like that of their legacy namesake—Maynard H. Jackson, Jr., the esteemed American politician and first African-American mayor of Atlanta and of any major city in the South—the graduating class of 2016 is shining brightly! Here are few highlights showcasing their banner year:
For the first time in APS history, two of Jackson’s students are technically college graduates because of the “Move On When Ready” dual enrollment program with Atlanta Metropolitan State College. Valedictorian, Taylor K. Dalton earned associates degrees in pre-engineering and mathematics—and incredibly will enroll as a freshman at GA Tech with the credits of a second semester junior; Nuri Omolara earned her associates degree in pre-engineering.
LeReya Brown and Lorenzo Maddox are Posse Scholars; Fenn Connor, won a gold medal in English at the state Academic Decathlon; the Girls Volleyball team were 3A Regional Champs; the Girls Basketball team were runners-up in the 3A State Championship Game; The Jaguar JROTC Battalion qualified for state in numerous events, including five for the Drill team, one for the Color Guard and one for the Rifle Team. Also, the Jaguar Battalion completed more than 2,000 hours of community service and; this year’s senior class of 252 graduates has earned more than $2.5 million in scholarships and that number is still growing!
Their Valedictorian and Salutatorian are amazing students, representing the brightest and best at M.H. Jackson High School. Valedictorian, Taylor, who always dreamed of going to college like her parents, has already defied the norm when she earned two college degrees before graduating high school.
A perpetual dreamer, Taylor, believes in infinite possibilities. She has received honors and recognitions from National Beta Club, National Honor Society, National Society of High School Scholars, Phi Theta Kappa, Dean’s List, Best Female Golfer, Governor’s Honors Program Completer, Blacks in Government Oratorical Contest Winner, Learning and Achievement Matters, Inc. Speech Competition Winner, and the APS Social Studies Fair 2015 1st Place Winner. She has even created a web design business, Dalton Design (D2). Her career goal is to graduate from GA Tech and become an industrial engineer while volunteering in her community and mentoring high school students.
When asked what is her most memorable high school moment, Taylor rhapsodically replied, “My moments were actually on college campus; each time my classmates and professors had to repeatedly pause and process the fact that I was a high school senior, I loved that feeling of being the ‘baby’ on campus.”
M.H. Jackson’s Salutatorian Delfina M. Booth, a brilliant scholar who, influenced by her parent’s belief that education is the greatest equalizer, has received numerous awards and recognitions:
High Honor Roll (Principal’s List); Georgia Certificate of Merit, given by the State of Georgia and the University of Georgia; The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, Silver Key, by the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers; Professional Association of Georgia Educators STAR student. Outside the classroom Delfina participates in Cross Country, running the 3200-meter run in Track. She is in Drama Club and a number of writing workshops with the Atlanta Young Writers Association. She is also a member of the Beta Club and student government.
When asked what is her most memorable high school moment, Delfina fondly replied, “The whole German 11th and 12th grade exchange program; it was such a great opportunity for cultural exchange and meeting new people. I plan to continue exploring other cultures.” Delfina has accepted an offer to attend Georgia Institute of Technology to pursue a career as a graphic artist who specializes in computational media.
Exemplifying what it means to be dedicated, hard-working and unrelenting, despite any obstacle or struggle, the 2016 senior class lives up to the school motto: “Mission Possible: Educate, Motivate, Graduate.”
Check out the M.H. Jackson Jaguars Twitter feed to see more amazing highlights @
Congratulations M.H. Jackson Jaguars Graduates, You Make Us #APSSTRONG!
Read about all of the outstanding APS Valedictorians and Salutatorians: 2016_Vals-Sals_Bios and Photos