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franklin county times

MHS grads bid farewell

By Staff
WILDCAT GRADUATION Amanda Heblon helps Jerry Gordon with his robe while Santarrio Fowler looks on Friday as Meridian High School seniors get ready for graduation ceremonies at Ray Stadium. Photo by Paula Merritt / The Meridian Star
By Georgia E. Frye / staff writer
May 24, 2003
E.J. Watson has big plans for the future. After graduating from Xavier University in New Orleans, he plans to work in marketing and advertising for professional sports teams.
Watson was among the 315 graduates who spent their last hours as high school students Friday night at Meridian High School's commencement exercises.
The ceremony was held on campus at Ray Stadium, where many of the students spent time at football games and other sporting events. But Friday, it became the place where they celebrated their biggest accomplishment in life thus far.
This year, MHS had three valedictorians. One of them, Mary Kathryn Covert, said she had mixed emotions about leaving MHS.
Covert plans to attend Samford University in the fall, where she is the recipient of the Presidential Lead Scholarship and the Presidential Freedom Scholarship.
She is also the recipient of other awards and scholarships among them the national Coca-Cola Scholarship and the Frontline State Board Scholarship. This summer, Covert plans to continue her community work with tobacco prevention.
Valedictorian Brent McCarty gave a speech about the importance of looking to the past in making a difference in the future. McCarthy said he plans to attend Millsaps College as a premed major.
McCarty said his favorite thing about MHS was the diversity among the students and the way they all got to know each other despite the large size of the class. McCarty is also the recipient of numerous awards and scholarships.
Valedictorian Kirsten Gambrell said she was sad to leave MHS. Gambrell also stressed the importance of looking to the past in making a difference in the future in her speech.
Salutatorian Rachael Deann said she was excited about graduating and is looking forward to relaxing this summer. She plans to attend Mississippi State University in the fall and major in predentistry or prelaw.
Also bidding farewell to the Meridian Public School system was Superintendent Dr. Janet McLin. In her speech, she encouraged students to return to Meridian and make a difference.