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Long-time academic rivals emerge as ESHS top students

- Kaylian B. Penn & Shaquille J. Christopher both score 4.3 GPA
Kaylian B. Penn, right, and Shaquille J. Christopher, left, have emerged as the top students of Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) for 2019. Photo: VINO
Kaylian B. Penn and Shaquille J. Christopher will be the Valedictorian and Salutatorian, respectively, when the Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) Graduation Exercise is held at the Multi-Purpose Sports Complex on Thursday June 27, 2019. Photo: VINO
Kaylian B. Penn and Shaquille J. Christopher will be the Valedictorian and Salutatorian, respectively, when the Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) Graduation Exercise is held at the Multi-Purpose Sports Complex on Thursday June 27, 2019. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- They have been in academic competition since Seventh Grade, pushing each other to maximise their potential, and now Kaylian B. Penn and Shaquille J. Christopher have emerged as the two top students of Elmore Stoutt High School (ESHS) for 2019.

Virgin Islands News Online caught up with the two friendly rivals today, June 24, 2019 where they, along with their Twelfth Grade colleagues, were in rehearsal at the Multi-Purpose Sports Complex for their graduation exercise scheduled for Thursday June 27, 2019.

Both of the top students scored a GPA of 4.3.

Akeya Herbert is the third top student of ESHS for 2019.

Future Psychologist

Valedictorian Ms Penn said she knew it was going to be between her and Christopher to take the top spot, “so it was just to see which one would get the top grades. It was really close.”

Penn said she and Christopher have always been battling for top academic honours throughout their secondary school life.

“I know him from Form One (Seventh Grade). He has always been my biggest competition.”

Relating that she is “Science for life,” Ms Penn said her other favourite subjects are Music and Mathematics.

This year’s top ESHS student aspires to become a Psychologist.

Future Surgeon

Salutatorian Mr Shaquille J. Christopher also said he was expecting either himself or Ms Penn to emerge as the top ESHS student. “Like she said we knew it was going to be between the two of us, it was just to see who placed where.”

Mr Christopher listed his favourite subjects as Mathematics, Science and Music.

He wishes to study Medicine and hopes of becoming a Surgeon someday.

Hard Work pays off

Both students, who now intend to pursue studies at H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC), related that their success did not come by chance but by hard work and lots of sacrifice, including from their teachers.

“This year was my second year being on the shift system so we were kind of getting used to it but being a CAPE [Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination] student we still didn’t have enough time for the courses so it was a lot more pressure. We needed to get lots more done in a shorter period of time.”

She added, it took lots of “late nights, early mornings, coming in on days when people on break, working hard,” to achieve her goals.

Mr Christopher echoed similar sentiments.

“It was a lot of work being a CAPE student. We had a lot of things to do in little time so we had to stay up late, wake up early, come in [to school] on weekends when we were supposed to be having free time but it was worth it and that hard work and dedication helped us to get where we are.”

Gratitude

Ms Penn and Mr Christopher were also full of gratitude to God, their parents and dedicated teachers.

“Definitely God. Without God we wouldn’t have been able to see today because that hurricane [Irma] was a bit rough…

“But I am also thankful for my parents for their unwavering support and the teachers and the faculty members for being dedicated to this journey. We wouldn’t have been able to come this far if we didn’t have teachers who were willing to work with us,” Ms Penn stated.

“Definitely God, because without Him I would not have been able to be where I am, also my parents for their contributions, as well as my teachers for helping me to get here,” Mr Christopher added.

Work hard & stay focused

Asked to share some words of encouragement to the continuing students of ESHS, Ms Penn said: “Work hard. I am not saying you can’t have your free time but work hard to get to accomplish your goals.”

Mr Christopher advised students to “Work hard and stay focused.”

4 Responses to “Long-time academic rivals emerge as ESHS top students”

  • To the students (24/06/2019, 19:32) Like (11) Dislike (1) Reply
    Congratulations!
  • Congrats (24/06/2019, 19:53) Like (11) Dislike (1) Reply
    Congrats to both of you. Hard work is the key to success! No short cuts. Well done to your parents and teachers also
  • OZYMANDIAS (25/06/2019, 14:24) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    See this is what I want .....mundane kids so they can just do their work no worries about popularity boys and girls harassing you.
  • Awesome! (01/07/2019, 09:22) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Congrats!!!!!!


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